Article published in:New Insights in the History of Interpreting
Edited by Kayoko Takeda and Jesús Baigorri-Jalón
[Benjamins Translation Library 122] 2016
► pp. 167–192
The use of photographs as historical sources, a case study
Early simultaneous interpreting at the United Nations.
This chapter presents a case study of how photographs can offer different angles of the dynamics involved in a complex observable event or series of events. As shown in previous research, photographs can only be valid historical sources if we are able to interpret them, and that requires the observer’s active participation and the use of additional sources, such as written or oral records. I analyze eight United Nations (UN) official photographs as part of the founding narrative of simultaneous interpreting (SI) history. After introducing the theoretical and methodological background, I present the historical context of SI at the UN. The analysis of the photographs focuses on (1) the SI equipment, (2) the interpreters, and (3) the users of their services.
Keywords: photographs as historical sources, simultaneous interpreting, United Nations interpreters
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Published online: 10 March 2016