Interpreter-mediated interaction

Cecilia Wadensjö
Table of contents

Discussing the number of members as an aspect that determines the sociological form of a group, Georg Simmel (1902 : 167) suggests that “every mediation inserts itself between the elements which are to be combined, and thus separates in the very act of uniting them” (italics in original). Interpreter-mediated interaction is a communicative activity conditioned by the circumstance that two parties need assistance from a third party in order to communicate, because the two do not share a language in which they are able or willing to communicate directly, and the third party, the interpreter, has competence in both. In interpreter-mediated interaction, the interpreter’s performance both unites and separates the two primary parties. A recurrent theme in interpreters’ professional forums concerns how to define the appropriate level of the interpreter’s intermediary involvement. In practice, this involvement seems to be determined partly by the interpreter’s proficiencies, partly by the other participants’ orientation and level of interaction.

Full-text access is restricted to subscribers. Log in to obtain additional credentials. For subscription information see Subscription & Price.


Angelelli, Claudia V.
2004Medical Interpreting and Cross-Cultural Communication. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
Angemeyer, Philipp Sebastian.
2015Speak English or What? Codeswitching and Interpreter Use in New York City Courts. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Apfelbaum, Birgit.
2004Gesprächsdynamik in Dolmetsch-Interaktionen. Radolfzell: Verlag für Gesprächsforschung.Google Scholar
Baraldi, Claudio and Laura Gavioli
(eds.) 2012Coordinating Participation in Dialogue Interpreting. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
Berk-Seligson, Susan.
1990The Bilingual Courtroom. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.  BoPGoogle Scholar
Blomqvist, Anna.
1996Food and Fashion: Water Management and Collective Action among Irrigation Farmers and Textile Industrialists in Sothern India. PhD dissertation, Linköping University.
Bolden, Galina B.
2000“Towards Understanding Practices of Medical Interpreters’ Involvement in History Taking.” Discourse Studies 2(4): 387–419. DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Bot, Hanneke.
2005Dialogue Interpreting in Mental Health. Amsterdam: Rodopi.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Chesterman, Andrew.
1997Memes of Translation. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. DOI logo  TSBGoogle Scholar
Corsellis, Ann.
2008Interpreting for Public Service: The First Steps. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan. DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Davidson, Brad.
2002 “A model for the construction of conversational common ground in interpreted discourse.” Journal of Pragmatics 34: 1273–1300. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
Davitti, Elena.
2013“Dialogue interpreting as intercultural mediation: Interpreter’s use of upgrading moves in parent-teacher meetings.” Interpreting 15(2): 168–197. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
De Pedro Ricoy, Raquel, Isabel A. Perez and Christine W. L. Wilson
(eds.) 2009Interpreting and Translating in Public Service Settings: Policy, Practice, Pedagogy. Manchester: St Jerome.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Gallez, Emanuelle.
2014Ethos et interprétation judicaire: Une analyse ethnographique de l’interprétation dans une cour d’assises belge: une étude de cas. PhD dissertation, KU Leuven.
Gallez, Emanuelle and Katrijn Maryns
2014“Orality and authenticity in an interpreter-mediated defendant’s examination: A case study from the Belgian Assize Court.” Interpreting 16(1): 49–80. DOI logo  TSBGoogle Scholar
Gentile, Adolfo, Uldis Ozolins and Mary Vasilakakos
1996Liaison Interpreting: A Handbook. Melbourne: Melbourne University Press.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Giabia, Francesca.
1998The Origins of Simultaneous Interpretations: The Nuremberg Trial. Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press.Google Scholar
Goffman, Erving.
1961Encounters: Two Studies in the Sociology of Interaction. Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill.Google Scholar
González, Roseann, Victoria Vásquez and Holly Mikkelson
2012Fundamentals of Court Interpretation: Theory, Policy and Practice, 2nd ed. Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Gumperz, John J.
1992“Contextualization and Understanding.” In Rethinking Context: Language as an Interactive Phenomenon, ed. by Alexandro Duranti and Charles Goodwin, 229–252. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Hale, Sandra B.
2004The Discourse of Court Interpreting. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
Hertog, Erik and Bart van der Ver
(eds) 2006Taking Stock: Research and Methodology in Community Interpreting. Linguistica Antverpiensia, New Series, 5/2006. Antwerp: Hoger Instituut voor Vertalers en Tolken, Hogeschool Antwerpen.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Hymes, Dell H.
1962“The Ethnography of Speaking.” In Anthropology and Human Behaviour, ed. by Thomas Gladwin and William C. Sturtevant, 13–53. Washington, DC: Anthropological Society of America.  BoPGoogle Scholar
1964Language in Culture and Society: A Reader in Linguistics and Anthropology. New York: Harper and Row.Google Scholar
Janson, Gunilla and Cecilia Wadensjö
2015/forthcoming. “Care Identities and Interpreting Practices.” In ASLA’s conference volume 8–9 May 2014, ed. by Stina Hållsten, Linda Kahlin, Mats Landqvist and Ingela Tykesson. Södertälje: Södertörn University.Google Scholar
2015God tolksed: Vägledning för auktoriserade tolkar [Good interpreter practice: Guide for authorized interpreters]. PDF file available at http://​www​.kammarkollegiet​.se​/dokument​/god​-tolksed, visited 13 April 2015.
Kainz, Claudia, Erich Prunč and Rafael Schögler
(eds.) 2011Modelling the Field of Community Interpreting: Questions of Methodology in Research and Training. Vienna: LIT Verlag.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Keselman, Olga, Ann-Christine Cederborg and Per Linnell
2010“‘That is not necessary for you to know!’ Negotiation of participation status of unaccompanied children in interpreter-mediated asylum hearings.” Interpreting 12 (1): 83–104. DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Knapp-Potthoff, Annelie and Karlfried Knapp
1986“Interweaving Two Discources – The Difficult Task of the Non-Professional Interpreter.” In Interlingual and Intercultural Communication, ed. by Juliane House and Shoshana Blum-Kulka, 450–463. Tübingen: Gunter Narr.Google Scholar
Lang, Rainer.
1976 “Orderlies as interpreters in Papua New Guinea.” Papua New Guinea Medical Journal 18(3): 172–177. DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Licoppe, Christian and Maud Vernier
2013 “Interpreting, video communication and the sequential reshaping of institutional talk in the bilingual and distributed courtroom.” International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law 20(2): 247–275. DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Linell, Per.
2009Rethinking Language, Mind and World Dialogically: Interactional and Contextual Theories of Human Sense-making. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.Google Scholar
Markaki Vassiliki, Sara Merlino, Lorenza Mondada, Florence Oloff and Veronique Traverso
2014Language choice and Participation management in international meetings. In Multilingual Encounters in Europe's institutional spaces, ed. by Johann, W. Unger, Michal Krzyzanowski and Ruth Wodak, 43–75. London: Bloomsbury.Google Scholar
Mason, Ian
(ed.) 1999The Translator 5(2). Special issue. Dialogue Interpreting.  BoPGoogle Scholar
(ed.) 2001, Triadic Exchanges: Studies in Dialogue Interpreting. Manchester: St. Jerome.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Mason, Ian.
2006“On mutual accessibility of contextual assumptions in dialogue interpreting.” Journal of Pragmatics 38: 359–373. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
Merlino, Sara.
2012Négocier la transition de la parole du traduit au traducteur l’organisation séquentielle et multimodale de la traduction orale. PhD dissertation, Université Lumière Lyon II.  TSB
Metzger, Melanie.
1999Sign Language Interpreting: Deconstructing the Myth of Neutrality. Washington DC: Gallaudet University Press.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Müller, Frank.
1989“Translation in bilingual conversation: Pragmatic aspects of translator interaction.” Journal of Pragmatics 13: 713–739. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
Napier, Jemina.
2007“Cooperation in interpreter-mediated monologic talk.” Discourse and Communication 1(4): 407–432. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
Nilsen, Anne Birgitta.
2005Flerspråklig kommunikasjon i rettssalen [Eng: Multilingual communication in the courtroom]. PhD dissertation, University of Oslo.Google Scholar
O’Barr, William, M.
1982Linguistic Evidence: Language, Power, and Strategy in the Courtroom. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
O’Barr, William M. and Bowman K. Atkins
1980 “‘Women’s Language’ or ‘Powerless Language’?” In Language and Gender: A Reader, ed. by Jennifer Coates, 377–387. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
Palmer, Jerry.
2007“Interpreting and translation for Western media in Iraq.” In Translating and Interpreting Conflict, ed. by Myriam Salama-Carr, 13–28. Amsterdam: Rodopi.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Pasquandrea, Sergio.
2011 “Managing multiple actions through multimodality: Doctors’ involvement in interpreter-mediated interactions.” Language in Society 40: 455–481. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
Pöchhacker, Franz.
2004Introducing Interpreting Studies. London: Routledge.  BoPGoogle Scholar
Roy, Cynthia B.
2000Interpreting as a Discourse Process. Oxford: Oxford University Press.  BoPGoogle Scholar
Russell, Debra and Sandra Hale
(eds) 2008Issues in legal interpretation. Washington, DC: Gallaudet Press.Google Scholar
Schegloff, Emanuel A.
2007Sequence Organization in Interaction: A Primer in Conversation Analysis. Volume 1. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
Seleskovitch, Danica.
1978Interpreting for International Conferences. Washington, DC: Pen and Booth.  TSBGoogle Scholar
Simmel, Georg.
1902“The Number of Members as Determining the Sociological Form of the Group.” American Journal of Sociology 8(2): 158–196. URL: http://​www​.jstor​.org​/stable​/2761932. DOI: DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Stranieri Sergio, Francesco.
1998 “Notes on Cultural Mediation.” The Interpreters’ Newsletter 8, Università degli Studi di Trieste, SSLMIT: 151–168.Google Scholar
1999“The Interpreter on the (Talk) Show – Interaction and Participation Frameworks.” The Translator 5(2): 303–326. DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Traverso, Véronique.
2012Ad hoc-interpreting in multilingual work meetings: Who translates for whom?” In Coordinating Participation in Dialogue Interpreting, ed. by Claudio Baraldi and Laura Gavioli, 149–176. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.  BoP DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Wadensjö, Cecilia.
1992Interpreting as Interaction: On Dialogue-interpreting in Immigration Hearings and Medical Encounters. PhD dissertation, Linköping University.  TSB
1998Interpreting as Interaction. London: Longman.  BoPGoogle Scholar
2000“Co-constructing Yeltsin – Explorations of an Interpreter-Mediated Political Interview.” In Intercultural Faultlines: Research Models in Translation Studies, Vol. I, Textual and Cognitive Aspects, ed. by Maeve Olohan, 233–252. Manchester: St. Jerome Publishing.Google Scholar
2004“Dialogue interpreting – A monologising practice in a dialogically organised world.” Target – International Journal of Translation Studies, 16(1): 105–124.Google Scholar
2008a“The Shaping of Gorbachev: On Framing in an Interpreter-Mediated Talk-Show Interview.” TEXT & TALK, 28(1): 119–146. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar
2008b“In and off the show: Co-constructing ‘Invisibility’ in an interpreter-mediated talk show interview.” META, Journal on Translation 53(1): 184–203. DOI logo  TSBGoogle Scholar
Valero-Garcés, Carmen.
2005“Doctor-patient consultations in dyadic and triadic exchanges.” Interpreting 7(2): 193–210. DOI logo  BoPGoogle Scholar