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Sigmund Freud: How to Translate a Genius

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Rarely must it have been as complex to translate the complete works of an author as was the case with the father of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, the author of multiple books and essays who introduced completely novel ideas to the world. Perhaps the most recognized translation is that of James Strachey, British, also a psychoanalyst, […]

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Do You Need a College Degree?

A few months ago, a lovely acquaintance who wants to be an interpreter, asked me whether she needed a college degree to succeed as a (court) interpreter. We hadn’t really thought about this, as college is such a natural step in most professionals’ lives, but the question is more than valid and merited some more […]

Modifiers, Interrupted

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As linguists, our work often times requires translating complex texts that include sentences and structures of all lengths and types. Given that sentence structures are often different from one language to another, the experienced linguist is well aware that a good quality translation may sometimes require the re-ordering of clauses so as to flow more […]

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Which Is Considered the Best Dubbing Job in History?

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In previous posts we dealt with the subject of the revolution of dubbing (specifically, in animated Disney films). Starting in the 1940s, this aspect of internationalization of film was subject to incredible improvements. But which is considered to be among the best dubbing jobs in history? And, more important still, what characteristics does it display? Through […]

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The Pronoun Game

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In Chasing Amy, by U.S. filmmaker Kevin Smith, the lead character in the film makes an unexpected switch in her relationship preferences and decides to tell her friends, all of whom are lesbians, that she is going out with “someone.” Her friends, without missing a beat, start to interrogate the character named Alyssa, played by […]

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Dzongkha Is Not Just a Perfume

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Dzongkha, besides being a woody fragrance that transports you to Buddhist monasteries, is also the official language of Bhutan. It means language (kh) within dzong. The dzong are fortified monasteries that in the past protected what is today Bhutan. They were built roughly in the seventeenth century by the Tibetan military leader Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal […]

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What Makes a Great Linguist?

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There is a whole host of valid answers to this question, but arguably the most significant – at least in the field of translation and interpreting – is the ability to understand how a foreign language is used by its different native speakers in their day-to-day lives. The process of developing foreign language skills is […]

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