Article published in:APTIF 9 - Reality vs. Illusion: From Morse code to machine translation
Edited by Frans De Laet, In-kyoung Ahn and Joong-chol Kwak
[Babel 66:4/5] 2020
► pp. 674–688
Struggling for professional identity
A narrative inquiry of Korean freelance male interpreters
Despite growing academic interest in the personal experiences of translators and interpreters with a focus on status, identity, role and ethics, and job satisfaction, there have been few academic attempts to inquire into the experiences of respective genders in the profession. Also, outside of T&I studies, most occupational research has examined the experience of women in male-dominated fields. Thus, the current study aims to shed light on the professional experiences and challenges of male interpreters working in a predominantly female profession in Korea. Taking a qualitative approach to interpret the male experience from a temporal, spatial, and cultural context, a narrative inquiry was conducted with male conference interpreters currently working in Korea to closely examine the struggles they experience in the process of their professional identity formation. Data analysis reveals that male interpreters face extreme gender bias and stereotypes at work, and struggle with issues such as emotional remoteness with colleagues, job insecurity, and crisis of identity stemming from an unstable social status for male interpreters.
Keywords: male interpreters, freelancing, professional identity, narrative inquiry, gender bias
Keywords: interprètes masculins, travail free-lance, identité professionnelle, enquête descriptive, préjugés sexistes
Published online: 05 October 2020
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