[New Publication] Gender-fair translation: a case study beyond the binary

By Manuel Lardelli

The increased visibility of non-binary individuals has fostered discussions around language and inclusivity. Due to differences in grammatical structures and language-specific strategies to represent non-binary genders, translation from notional gender languages into grammatical gender languages is extremely challenging. Hence, I propose a case study in gender-fair translation from English into German. Six language professionals translated three different texts. For each text, participants were instructed to use a different approach to gender-fair language, namely gender-neutral rewording, gender-inclusive characters, and neosystems. The focus of the present study is not on translation quality but rather on the cognitive processes and ease of integrating gender-fair language in the translation process. Findings from screen recordings show clear differences in translation times among participants and only partially among strategies. Results from retrospective interviews, non-participant observation, and target text annotations show increased keyboard activity and perceived difficulty in neosystems as well as lower success in their application.