The effect of word order differences on English-into-Arabic simultaneous interpreters’ performance
Word order differences between English and Arabic represent one of the problems faced by English-into-Arabic simultaneous interpreters. This paper investigates this problem by testing the effect of six problematic English linear arrangements on the accuracy of performance of interpreters in three text types: the expressive, informative and vocative. These constructions are considered problematic because they contain key words which force the interpreter to lag too far behind the speaker before they are rendered into Arabic. This lagging behind entails a risk of short-term memory overload and consequently affects performance.The assumption has been verified and departures in the form of omissions and errors have been identified in the interpreters’ performance. But the interpreters resorted to a tactic that helped them to stay as close as possible to the speaker, viz., tracking, particularly in the rendition of the vocative passage. However, this tactic was not always manipulated successfully due to inappropriate handling or to the fact that the construction itself did not lend itself to tracking.It has also been found that departures are higher in the rendition of the expressive and informative passages than the vocative passage.
Published online: 22 April 2005
Cited by 1 other publications
Alkhamra, Rana A. & Aya B. Al-Jazi
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