Chapter published in:Common Law in an Uncommon Courtroom: Judicial interpreting in Hong Kong
Eva N.S. Ng
[Benjamins Translation Library 144] 2018
► pp. 39–48
Modes of interpretation and audience roles in interpreted trial discourse
The previous chapter provided an overview of the practice of interpreting in the Hong Kong courtroom from the early times to the present days. This chapter focuses on the present-day Hong Kong courtroom and explains the modes of interpretation commonly adopted and the audience roles of court actors in a trial conducted in Hong Kong courts, as opposed to other courtroom settings. It compares the audience roles of court actors in interpreted court proceedings in two bilingual legal settings. The first one is a common bilingual setting where interpretation is provided for the linguistic minority; the other is the unusual bilingual Hong Kong courtroom, where interpreting service is necessitated because the linguistic majority do not speak the language of the court. This chapter evaluates the modes of interpretation used in the two different settings with reference to the participation status of individual court actors and thus the implications for their power in the judicial process.