[New publication] Journal of Interpretation: Volume 27, Issue 1, 2019
Journal of Interpretation: 27 (1)
Abstract: Interpreting agencies have been identified as playing a crucial role in the professionalization process of community interpreting (Ozolins, 2007; Dong & Turner, 2016; Dong & Napier, 2016), but little research on agency influence has been undertaken. Ozolins (2007) claims that actual agency practices may be difficult to research due to agencies guarding proprietary information or avoiding judgment. Hence this study sought insight into the perceptions of British Sign Language (BSL)-English interpreters on the role of agencies in influencing market and professional standards and market disorder (Witter-Merithew & Johnson, 2004) in the U.K. interpreting industry. The study also explored opinions on the need for a Code of Industry Practice for agencies and agency accreditation (Ozolins, 2007; Feyne, 2012). Although U.K. centric, the findings may apply to other national contexts. Results indicate a mistrust of interpreting agencies, and survey respondents were strongly in favor of a Code of Industry Practice and agency accreditation. Results also indicated a perception amongst survey participants that agencies play a pivotal role in influencing market and professional standards including quality of services, job allocation, interpreter pay and working terms and conditions. Recommendations are offered for implementing a Code of Industry Practice and an instrument for agency accreditation.
Orientation to the Interpreted Interaction: An Examination of Consumer Perception, by Colleen Jones
Abstract: A survey of non-signing adults showed that a lack of information about the interpreted interaction may lead to feelings of confusion and distraction as well as a negative perception of the Deaf interlocutor. A review of the literature and of current practice standards revealed that there is very little written on orientation to the interpreted interaction, or consumer orientation, wherein consumers are informed about what to expect during the interpreted interaction, how the interpreter will function, and how they can participate in ensuring that communication is accessible and inclusive. Recommendations include further research on current practices and the impacts of consumer orientation, opening a dialogue within interpreting Communities of Practice, and the development of evidence-based best practices for orienting consumers.
Pronouns in ASL-English Simultaneous Interpretation, by David Quinto-Pozos, Kierstin Muroski, and Emily Saunders
Abstract: Pronominal systems across languages mark grammatical categories in different ways, and this can pose challenges for simultaneous interpretation. Pronouns can also be ambiguous, for example, by collapsing distinctions in some forms or by resembling demonstratives. We examine pronouns produced by a Deaf signer of American Sign Language (ASL) within a TEDx talk and how they are interpreted (simultaneously) by an ASL-English interpreter. Pronouns from both languages were coded and scrutinized for semantic correspondence across the two languages. Robust correspondences were found with some personal pronouns, especially first-person forms. However, mismatches across languages, in particular third-person forms and demonstratives, provide evidence of pitfalls for interpretation. In particular, we suggest that the ambiguous nature of some forms (e.g., third-person pronouns and singular demonstratives) can cause challenges for simultaneous interpretation across modalities.
Discoursing into Interpreting – Sign Language Interpreting Students and their Construction of Professional Identity as Interpreters for Deafblind Individuals, by Gro Hege Saltnes Urdal
Abstract: This article reports on students’ process of Bildung expressed as their construction of professional identity as interpreters for deafblind individuals. With a qualitative research design and critical discourse analysis, focus group discussions were used to gain insight into which discourses students drew upon when constructing their professional identity at different stages during their education. Data from the focus group discussions were analyzed by using Fairclough’s (1989, p. 112) values of features, experiential and expressive values. The findings indicate that students drew upon intersecting and antagonistic discourses in the construction of their professional identity. At the beginning of their education, and before meeting deafblind people, students emphasized discourses that were based on their previous experiences. They mainly described deafblind people by drawing on a care needing discourse, and the interpreter by operating a caring discourse. Later on in their study, students also operated the discourses that were made available to them in class and in the field of practice, such as an independence discourse related to deafblind people, and a technical, a reflective and a collaborative discourse related to the professional interpreter. Students also drew upon a student discourse in all focus group discussions. This entails that during their study, students went through a process of Bildung, which was manifested in their construction of their professional identity.