Linguistics Colloquium: Tamara Halutzi
Tamara Halutzi, University of Haifa
Title: “We Are Not a Transparent Conduit!”: Professional Stances and Perceptions of Israeli Sign Language Interpreters
The lecture concerns the stances of Israeli sign language (ISL) interpreters towards their profession. By collecting responses to a semi-structure questionnaire that was designed especially for the purpose of the current study, I examine the interpreters' personal and professional perceptions.
The semi-structure questionnaire was designed to study the interpreters’ stances, particularly, their relation to two prominent views on interpreting – the Machine Model (aka “Transparent Conduit”) and the non-Machine model. While the machine model favors neutrality, the non-Machine model promotes awareness to the presence of the interpreter and acknowledges his or her impact on the situation interpreted.
Interpreting services play an important part in enabling the deaf communicate with the hearing society. Therefore, sign language interpreting requires an everyday interaction with the deaf and hard of hearing community, which can affect the interpreters’ stances and actions in the interpreting situation – a subject that is also at the heart of the current study. Furthermore, as sign language interpreting is essential for the deaf, this study has social implications for this community.
The significance of the study lies in its capacity to raise interpreters’ awareness to the influence of their personal and professional stances on their interpretation to and from ISL. Interpreting choices are not merely a result of cognitive effort, and simultaneous interpreting constraints are also affected by the interpreters’ positioning towards the discourse object, the deaf clients’ stances, and other aspects of the interpreted situation.
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