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Interpreter Strategies and the Power Dynamics of Political Interviews by Prof.Mona Baker
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Topic:  Interpreter Strategies and the Power Dynamics of Political Interviews by Prof.Mona Baker
posted itemPosted - 13/01/2005 :  17:21:00
Au Ching Pong

Department of Chinese, Translation and Linguistics



Professor Mona Baker

Centre for Translation and Intercultural Studies School of Languages, Linguistics and Cultures University of Manchester, UK

Interpreter Strategies and the Power Dynamics of Political Interviews

Time: 4:30 - 6:00 pm

Date: 17th January 2005 (Monday)

Venue: Lecture Theatre 12, Blue Zone,, Level 5, City University of Hong Kong


Interviews with Arab leaders in the Western media are often conducted with the help of an interpreter. This talk examines the dynamics of interpreting for an Arab political leader with reference to a televised interview with Saddam Hussein during the first Gulf War. The interview, which was recorded live in Baghdad, was broadcast by the British television channel ITN on 11 November 1990: about three months after the invasion of Kuwait and approximately two months before the first invasion of Iraq. Following a description of the main features of this type of encounter and the constraints it imposes on the interpreter, an attempt will be made to relate the choice of strategies on the part of the interpreter to the nature of the encounter and the dynamics of power in this type of situation. The talk will further highlight the way in which the interpreter's performance may help to create or reinforce specific cultural stereotypes, construct a convenient image of the enemy, and enable or obstruct an understanding of the other's points of view and priorities.

About the Speaker

Mona Baker is Professor of Translation Studies at the University of Manchester, UK. She is author of In Other Words: A Coursebook on Translation (Routledge 1992, reprinted ten times), Editor of the Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies (1998, 2001), Founding Editor of The Translator: Studies in Intercultural Communication (St. Jerome Publishing, 1995- ), Editor of the forthcoming Critical Concepts: Translation Studies (Routledge, 2006, 4 Volumes) and Editorial Director of St. Jerome Publishing. She is also Vice-President of IATIS (International Association of Translation & Intercultural Studies).
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