Article published In:
TargetVol. 30:2 (2018) ► pp.212–239
Interpreter-mediated drafting of written records in police interviews
A case study
Text drafting is an essential component of many of the contexts in which interpreters are called in to ensure communication (Määttä 2015). As Komter (2006) shows, the drafting process itself can be considered a turn in the interaction. Interpreters involved in such contexts thus perform a communicative pas de quatre, crossing not only the language divide, but also the modal divide (oral vs. written). In this paper, we analyse how an interpreter in a Belgian police interview handles this complex task. It appears that she procedurally and declaratively recognises a written turn in the interaction and uses its authoritative voice to silence the witness by sight-translating the turn as it is being typed on the screen. In line with previous research on interpreters’ handling of dialogues (Hale 1997), the interpreter also shapes turns, including the written turn, to the needs of the addressees: upgrading the register properties of the interviewee’s talk and downgrading those of the written turn.
- 2.Written records in police interviews
- 3.Research questions
- 4.Data of the case at hand
- 4.1Preliminary note on the transcriptions
- 4.2Interview data and interaction patterns
- 4.3Primary speakers’ linguistic skills
- 4.4Interviewee’s awareness of procedures
- 4.5The interpreter
- 4.6Position of the participants and the researcher
- 5.A written turn in the interpreter-mediated police interview?
- 5.2Interpreting input
- 5.3Information gathering
- 5.4Register alignment of interviewee’s turns with the written turns
- 5.5Properties of the written turn and their rendering by the interpreter
“Translation Style and Participant Roles in Court Interpreting
.” Journal of Sociolinguistics
13 (1): 3–28.
1990 Le français parlé. Études grammaticales
. Paris: CNRS.
“Investigating Narrative Inequality: African Asylum Seekers’ Stories in Belgium
.” Discourse and Society
12 (4): 413–449.
“Towards Understanding Practices of Medical Interpreting: Interpreter’s Involvement in History Taking
.” Discourse Studies
2 (4): 287–314.
Defrancq, Bart, and Sofie Verliefde
2015 Do Translations Walk the Line? Visually Exploring Translated and Non-Translated Texts in Search of Norm Conformity
. PhD diss. Ghent University.
Gallez, Emanuelle, and Katrijn Maryns
“The Treatment of Register Variation in Court Interpreting
.” The Translator
3 (1): 39–54.
Jönsson, Linda, and Per Linell
“Story Generations: From Dialogical Interviews to Written Reports in Police Interrogations
11 (3): 419–440.
“From Talk to Text: The Interactional Construction of a Police Record
.” Research on Language and Social Interaction
39 (3): 201–228.
Määttä, Simo K.
“Interpreting the Discourse of Reporting: The Case of Screening Interviews with Asylum Seekers and Police Interviews in Finland
.” The International Journal for Translation and Interpreting
7 (3): 21–34.
Maryns, Katrijn, and Jan Blommaert
2014 Interpreter-Mediated Police Interviews. A Discourse-Pragmatic Approach
. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Nilsen, Anne Birgitta, and May-Britt Monsrud
“Reading Skills for Sight Translation in Public Services
.” Translation and Interpreting. The International Journal for Translation and Interpreting Research
7 (3): 10–20
“The Belgian System
.” In European Criminal Procedures
, edited by Mireille Delmas-Marty
and John R. Spencer
, 81–14. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
2004 Introducing Interpreting Studies
. London: Routledge.
Pöchacker, Franz, and Waltraud Kolb
Smets, Lotte, and Paul Ponsaers
“Het proces-verbaal van een verdachtenverhoor: een bron van informatie? Diverse formats van geschreven communicatie tussen politie en parket
.” Cahiers Politiestudies
4 (21): 123–144.
“Skill Transfer from Sight Translation to Simultaneous Interpreting: A Case Study of an Effective Teaching Technique
.” International Journal of Interpreter Education
van Charldorp, Tessa
“The Coordination of Talk and Typing in Police Interrogations
.” Crossroads of Language, Interaction and Culture
8 (1): 61–92.
van Charldorp, Tessa
“ ‘What Happened?’ From Talk to Text in Police Interrogations
.” Language and Communication
1998 Interpreting as Interaction
. London: Longman.
Cited by 4 other publications
. Fight for focus: attention and agency in sight-translated interaction
pp. 39 ff.
Määttä, Simo K, Eeva Puumala & Riitta Ylikomi
. Linguistic, psychological and epistemic vulnerability in asylum procedures: An interdisciplinary approach
. Discourse Studies
pp. 46 ff.
Vandenbroucke, Mieke & Bart Defrancq
. Professionally unaligned interpreting in Belgian marriage fraud investigations and its consequences
. The Translator
pp. 12 ff.
Verliefde, Sofie & Bart Defrancq
. Interpreter-mediated access to the written record in police interviews
. Perspectives ►
pp. 1 ff.
This list is based on CrossRef data as of 28 march 2023. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers.
Any errors therein should be reported to them.