Guest post: Os estudos de gênero e a tradução

Bem-vindos de volta a mais uma publicação convidada!

Hoje tenho o prazer de receber uma colega que faz um trabalho incrível e interessantíssimo com estudos de gênero. E é claro que eu não poderia deixar de convidá-la para escrever sobre isso aqui no blog, não é mesmo? Espero que gostem.

Seja bem-vinda, Graziele!

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Foto de Vanessa Serpas disponível em Unsplash

A tradução e os estudos de gênero: o papel político e cultural da linguagem

A questão de gênero tem sido um tema recorrente nos meios de comunicação em massa e mídias sociais recentemente. Temas como violência de gênero e feminicídio, assédio sexual, etc. cada vez mais ganham destaque e são alvos de muita discussão. A visita ao Brasil da filósofa norte-americana Judith Butler, referência no campo de estudos de gênero, é um exemplo dos impactos sociais deste debate. As acusações de pregação de uma suposta “ideologia de gênero”, dirigidas à filósofa, dão o tom de uma percepção moral que alguns setores da sociedade demonstram diante do debate de gênero. Partindo do princípio de que essa ideologia seria contrária a certos valores morais e tradicionais da família, esses setores, entre acusações e ameaças, causaram muita comoção e discussões calorosas sobre gênero. Mas afinal, o que é gênero e o que significa estudar gênero? E o que gênero tem a ver com tradução?

Os estudos de gênero nasceram muito próximos do movimento feminista nos Estados Unidos nos anos 1960, quando questões como o papel da mulher ganharam destaque. No entanto, é importante ressaltar que a questão de gênero não se restringe a feminino e masculino, mas também incorpora a transgressão de gênero, pessoas que não necessariamente se encaixam no binário mulher e homem. Portanto, ao tratar-se de problemáticas relacionadas a gênero, é fundamental ter em mente que ele não se restringe a questões relacionadas somente à mulher e ao homem.

O conceito gênero enquanto ferramenta analítica e de pesquisa amplia discussões relacionadas a política, cultura e sociedade no geral. Portanto, do ponto vista teórico, não se restringe a aspectos morais ou a opinião pessoal de pesquisadores e pesquisadoras. Ele parte do princípio de que gênero é uma construção social e, por isso, varia dependendo do contexto socioeconômico de cada sociedade. Sendo assim, a inserção de gênero enquanto categoria central da pesquisa abriu espaço para novas perguntas na produção acadêmica: como questões de feminidade e masculinidade são entendidas em cada sociedade? Como eles são perpetuados ao longo de gerações e quais as consequências? Como gênero, raça, classe, nacionalidade, religião, sexualidade, etc. se interseccionam? E como as configurações de poder são definidas nesse contexto? Como a globalização muda o entendimento e o significado de gênero?

Nesse sentido, a linguagem usada para responder a essas perguntas desempenha um papel extremamente crítico, ou seja, pode impactar, em alguma medida, as percepções que os sujeitos e grupos sociais naturalizam. Uma das questões mais proeminentes no campo é o uso de palavras neutras que rompam com o binário mulher e homem. Isso ocorre especialmente no caso de idiomas como o português, em que se costuma usar o gênero linguístico masculino para generalizar grupos. Essa escolha no atual contexto tem um significado político e cultural. Por muito tempo, a voz de grupos marginalizados na sociedade, como mulheres, homossexuais, negros, transgêneros, foi desconsiderada e/ou apagada da história, da ciência e da política. Por isso, existe um esforço de se repensar a linguagem e o que ela representa, dando espaço para que esses grupos escolham as palavras com as quais eles se identificam. Essa escolha, por mais simbólica que possa parecer, abre espaço para a discussão do significado e da escolha de determinado termo. Por exemplo, na minha dissertação do mestrado, eu escolhi usar a palavra “mulata” em vez de “mulato” ou ainda “mulatx/mulat@” quando eu me referia a essa categoria no geral, pois analisei diversas propagandas usadas para a promoção turística do Brasil, nas quais o corpo da mulher cisgênero foi usado extensivamente. Essa foi uma escolha pensada e que visou ressaltar e criticar a exploração de um grupo social específico nesse projeto.

A tradução desempenha um papel importante nesse contexto, impulsionada especialmente pelo transnacionalismo das instituições, sejam elas públicas e/ou privadas. Desse modo, e como já discutido muito na indústria, não basta apenas o conhecimento linguístico do idioma, mas também socioeconômico e cultural dos idiomas a serem traduzidos. Especialmente nas traduções de negócios, marketing e conteúdos sociais, localizar e adaptar o conteúdo para o público-alvo é um dos maiores desafios do tradutor de modo que o significado político da linguagem não seja ignorado. No campo da pesquisa, a tradução é fundamental para a realização de estudos envolvendo grupos sociais que não falam o mesmo idioma. Seja na coleta de dados ou na tradução de artigos científicos, a escolha dos termos usados deve ser pensada cuidadosamente, pois eles não necessariamente apresentam a mesma conotação, muitas vezes nem existindo em determinados contextos, podendo inclusive impactar o resultado de pesquisas científicas.

Por fim, o tradutor deve estar ciente de sua responsabilidade social, política e cultura na manutenção ou não de formas de pensamentos existentes. Pesquisar tem o potencial de evitar muitas dessas questões. Afinal, a tradução, assim como a linguagem, tem o poder de unir diferentes povos e abrir canais de comunicação antes não existentes.

Sobre a autora
picGraziele Grilo tem bacharelado em Ciências Políticas pela UNICAMP e acaba de concluir o mestrado em Estudos de Gênero pela Towson University (EUA). Sua dissertação foi na área de gênero, política, raça e turismo no Brasil. Também se interessa muito pela atual crise mundial de refugiados. Acaba de auxiliar na criação, além de participar ativamente, de um projeto com alunos de ensino médio refugiados da África e Oriente Médio, que visou utilizar as artes como meio de expressão e ativismo para esses alunos, em um contexto no qual o idioma pode ser barreira na comunicação. Atua como tradutora freelance desde 2012 nos idiomas português, inglês e espanhol. É torcedora do São Paulo Futebol Clube, ama Pearl Jam e se aventurar na cozinha.
Contato: trad.gragrilo@gmail.com
LinkedIn: Graziele Grilo

 

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Greatest Women in Translation: Charlotte Collins

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Image credit: Erick Tonin

Welcome back to our Greatest Women in Translation interview series! It’s been a long time since our last interview due to my vacation. We are now back with our last interviewee of the year, Charlotte Collins, nominated by Marta Dziurosz.

Welcome, Charlotte!

Charlotte Collins

Photo credit: Jaime Stewart / Image created with Canva

1. You only started as a literary translator in 2012. Before that, you were mainly a journalistic translator. However, with the very first book you translated, A Whole Life by Robert Seethaler, you won the 2017 Helen & Kurt Wolff Translation Prize. Do you think that having had a connection with the book beforehand made a difference to the way you translated it? I’m referring to the fact that you were asked to write a reader’s report on the book for Picador, were very enthusiastic about it, and the publisher was convinced to buy the rights.

It’s not unusual for a translator to come to a book in this way, after writing a reader’s report for the publisher. What I didn’t realize at the time, because I was just starting out, was that you’re seldom asked to read something this good! It’s a rare delight for me to feel such an intense personal and emotional connection with the work.

I’m not sure to what extent that influenced the translation process, though. I try to be meticulous with everything I translate. Literary translation isn’t just about communicating content; you’re trying to reproduce, as closely as possible, the atmosphere and feel of the original. But this is such a delicate thing to do. It’s necessarily subjective; the text is being filtered through your own mind and sensibility, so what you’re reproducing for others to read – and interpret – is your impression of it. Another translator will inevitably reproduce it differently. So however ‘invisible’ a translator tries to be, they can’t help but be an integral part of the text.

Because of this, I feel a duty to try and stay as close to the original as I can – without, of course, sounding clunky. I pay very close attention to what I believe to be the author’s intention (though here again my interpretation can only be subjective), and feel I have a responsibility not to betray it. So, for example, I might be weighing up translation choices and find myself thinking, “But if s/he had wanted to say that, s/he would have chosen this word instead.” In which case I’ll stick with whichever’s closer, providing it works.

I felt it was especially important to do this with A Whole Life. It was clear to me that the author had chosen each word with great care, for a reason, and it was vital that I do the same. With other texts I might allow myself a bit more freedom. The one I’m translating now, for example – Mark und Bein (Homeland) by Walter Kempowski – requires a much looser approach: he has a very distinctive style, and that needs to come across, but it runs the risk of sounding awkward in English. I’ll be discussing with the editor how free it can be. It’s a challenge.

2. You think the literary translation community is “tremendously supportive.” How do you think this benefits new translators entering the market?

I think this is a wonderful time for emerging literary translators – in the anglophone world, at least; I can’t speak for other regions. Translated fiction is enjoying something of a ‘moment’ – sales are up, the readership is expanding, and new and reconstituted prizes like the Man Booker International, the Dublin International, the new Translators Association prize for emerging translators and the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation are making a fantastic contribution to promoting translated literature, as well as increasing the visibility of the translators themselves and an appreciation of what it is we do.

One of the most valuable resources out there is the Emerging Translators Network. It was set up by three of my colleagues in 2011, and is aimed at translators who are just embarking on their literary career. It now has hundreds of members all around the world. The ETN provides practical peer support and advice via an online forum, and it’s also a great social network. As is the case for any writer, there’s the potential for translation to be quite an isolated profession. I was lucky enough to move into literary translation shortly after the ETN was founded. There are so many translation-related events happening, and if you look or post on the forum you can usually find colleagues who are going. Some colleagues I met just a few years ago are now close friends.

Once you’ve published something, or have a contract to publish, you’re eligible to join the Translators Association of the (UK) Society of Authors. It’s really worth doing, not only for the networking and in order to keep abreast of developments in the profession, but also because, once you’re a member, you can send contracts to the SoA’s legal team. They’ll check them for you with a fine-toothed comb, and advise you on what you could and should be asking for. That alone is worth far more than the membership fee!

3. I previously watched and shared on my social media channels the speech you gave on accepting the prize mentioned in question 1. I’ve just watched it again to write these questions and was equally impressed and inspired by it. One of the most beautiful things you said was that you “feel passionately that the learning of languages is tremendously important for breaking through […] walls, for crossing […] borders, for making […] connections, for understanding other cultures.” You made a connection between this growing spirit of isolation, especially among political leaders, of not wanting to communicate, to reach out to other people and cultures, and the drop in the learning of languages by English speakers. Could you elaborate a bit on the connection between learning new languages and the spirit of openness and understanding?

In order to learn to speak another language well, you need to understand how that language works within the culture. Language isn’t just words. Everyone knows – translators especially – that words exist within a context, and that context is all. So learning another language means you’re opening yourself up to that other culture, learning about different ways of thinking and doing things; you gain a sense of a different history and environment, a different way of life. It can’t help but broaden the mind. Our world today is globalised: we’re not living, and cannot live, in isolation, be it social, cultural, economic or political. But we’ll never all be the same. We can and should celebrate our differences and diversity – including linguistic diversity – while at the same time seeking to bridge those differences and facilitate better understanding between peoples. The better we’re able to communicate with someone in their own language – the more of their language and culture we understand – the better we’re able to understand them and their way of thinking. And that of course puts us in a better position to build bridges, cement ties, do business, negotiate peace, do whatever it is we want or need to do.

Even learning a language to a very basic level will take you some of the way. It’s not just about being able to speak fluently: you’ll experience and understand how different languages actually force you to think and communicate differently. I’ve learned to appreciate, for example, that my bad habit of interrupting people is even more unacceptable in German. How can I possibly know what someone’s trying to say when they haven’t even got to the verb! And when speaking in German you need to have a very clear idea of what you want to say, otherwise you may have to go back and start the sentence again. It’s much easier to waffle in English.

4. In your opinion, not only learning languages but also reading translated fiction is important for the exploration of new cultures. You say that, when we read, we enter into the character’s head; we become that person, we are drawn into their world. How is that particularly special when reading translated fiction?

For all the reasons given above. It’s essential that we broaden our understanding of others, of how people outside our own little bubble of experience live and think, and why. It’s important that we learn to have empathy, and realise how our actions impact on those around us. What better way to do this than through fiction? Fiction takes you inside someone else’s head; you’re directly experiencing things from their point of view, thinking their thoughts, living their life, hearing their voice inside your mind as if it were your own, being transported to places you’ve never seen, that may not even exist. If you look at it this way, reading is a kind of magic. And if you’re reading literature in translation, the starting point is already a culture other than your own, so the book will inevitably transport you to places and points of view outside your immediate realm of experience.

5. In your speech, you said: “It is important, especially now, that we read well, that we read wisely, and that we read translations.” How do you think we – translators – can play our part in increasing awareness of this?

First, we need to promote ourselves more. Translators are not, on the whole, natural Rampensäue (limelight-hoggers). In our profession we spend the majority of our time working at home, on our own, in silence, with just a book for company, in close communion with the mind of someone who may or may not be dead, and is almost certainly unaware of our devoted attention. This is what we’ve chosen to do, and there are probably reasons for that. I think many of us find it difficult to promote ourselves and our work, beyond telling a few friends and colleagues when we’ve got a book out, either because we’re a bit shy, or because we’re afraid of coming across as arrogant or pushy. To me, each individual translator is a representative of and an advocate for the profession. This is why I support the #namethetranslator initiative, which aims to ensure that translators are always credited alongside authors on websites, in reviews, broadcasts and so on. We want readers to be aware of the work we do, to be conscious that they’ve just read and enjoyed a translation, because it might make them want to read others. In my experience, once people really start thinking about what translation involves, they’re intrigued and want to find out more. At literary festivals, translators are becoming a bit of a draw in themselves – talking about a specific book, examining their craft, discussing with the author, or representing him/her if s/he is unavailable (or dead). Once we can command that interest, we acquire a platform to speak about our work, about the books we love, and about wider contemporary issues, and be heard.

6. “Life is just one moment after another. They might be big moments or small moments, but every one is precious.” This was another of your touching lines, referring to the depth of the book A Whole Life and the author’s attention to detail. I reckon one of your big moments in life was receiving the prize. How about one of your small, but special, moments? I would love to learn what it was.

Small, special moments… well, there are so many. They’re all around us, all the time. You just have to focus on them. As soon as anyone talks about it like this they immediately sound like a New Ager, but it’s true. I’d say that, like Andreas Egger in A Whole Life, I often find them in nature. I have lots of memories of moments spent looking at a beautiful view. For example: sitting outside a mountain hut early one morning and looking down on the mist clearing from the Kaisertal as the sun came up, all those little fluffy clouds drifting off like sheep in search of the exit. Or… aged 18, reading T.S. Eliot’s Four Quartets for the first time, under the sloping ceiling of an attic room. It was breathtaking – I felt as if I were being swept up and away in a whirlwind, and when I finished I more or less fell off the bed.

And all shall be well and 
All manner of thing shall be well
 
When the tongues of flame are in-folded
 
Into the crowned knot of fire
 
And the fire and the rose are one.

7. Now it’s your turn to nominate our next Great Woman in Translation.

I’d like to nominate Antonia Lloyd-Jones, who has just stepped down after three years as co-chair of the Translators Association. As well as being a multiple-award-winning translator in her own right and one of the leading practitioners in her field, Antonia’s also a dedicated mentor and an inspiration to a great many of her colleagues, particularly emerging translators from the Polish. She has long been a vocal and active champion of translators and translated fiction.

How to make the most of an ATA conference

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Unsplash

First of all, Happy Thanksgiving!

This won’t be a Thanksgiving post though. I decided to leave it to my last post of the year, next month, when I intend to make a 2017 wrap-up. Should you miss my Thanksgiving posts, you can read the ones I published in the previous years: What I learned from a bad year (2016), Five things to be grateful for (2015) and Giving thanks (2014).

Today I want to talk about my experience as a newbie at ATA 58. The American Translators Association (ATA) traditionally hosts every year a huge conference with more than 1,000 attendees, each year in a different U.S. city. This year, in its 58th edition, it was held in Washington, D.C. and attended by exactly 1,721 people from all over the U.S. and the rest of the world.

Upon preparing for it, I asked my colleague and friend Melissa Harkin, who had already attended the ATA conference for the first time last year, for some tips. They were all extremely useful, so I’ll make a summary of my tips, based on my experience as a newbie, with hers.

Since it’s a huge conference, the largest in our area, standing out is key. However, be careful with how you interpret this “stand out.” It doesn’t mean desperately imposing and calling all the attention to yourself; it means gracefully leaving your mark and differentiating yourself among the crowd.

  • The conference has an app. As soon as it’s out, fill out your profile with all possible information, including adding a picture and a CV, and adding your language pair in your description, so people can see your language pair straight from the attendees’ list, right below your name. Believe it or not, most attendees underestimate the app and do not use it for anything. Besides being handy during the conference, since it’s filled with useful information, it’s a great way of making yourself visible.
    A potential client contacted me before the conference – she was looking for Brazilian Portuguese translators. Later she said that she liked my app profile because it clearly stated my language pair under my name.
  • Don’t make it about yourself. Focus on the other (either colleague or agency). Truly engage, show interest, ask questions about them. Avoid being forced and sounding like a robot.
    I met a girl during the Welcome Celebration who took the Buddies Welcome Newbies session’s tips too literally, and the poor thing ended up sounding fake to me, resulting in zero engagement.
  • Be open to meeting new people, naturally engage, occasionally exchange business cards, if given the opportunity, and move on. In Portuguese, the expression “alugar uma pessoa” (rent a person) is used when you talk with a person for a long time. Don’t do that. It’s a huge event, with hundreds of people and a bunch of things to do. Time is precious.
  • The Brainstorm Networking features quick brainstorming sessions where a group of people quickly introduce themselves, exchange cards and discuss a scenario. Follow the steps quickly, and don’t dominate it, so everybody has their say. This is not the place for a heated discussion or parallel conversions.
  • The Job Fair is not on a first-come-first-served basis, so be cool and take your time. Don’t rush in front of other people neither simply throw your card on the table. Stand in line, if there is one, and while you wait for your time try to listen to what the recruiters are saying, so you can spare their time when your turn comes. Even if they don’t work with your language pair/area of specialization, be friendly and thank them for their time.
    Extra tip (by Melissa): Create a personalized visual CV for the Job Fair. You will certainly stand out.

If you are shy or new to conferences in general, don’t miss the Buddies Welcome Newbies session, right in the first day. Buddies are seasoned attendees who are willing to help newbies (first-time attendees) around the conference. The session has great tips for enjoying the conference to the fullest, and you sit at a table with other buddies and newbies, so it’s also a great opportunity for meeting new people. If you are by yourself and don’t know anyone, you won’t be anymore after this session.

If you already have a “gang,” don’t stick only to the person or group of people you already know. Whenever there is a different person around you, switch from your mother tongue to English, so they don’t feel left out. It’s great having familiar people around, but try exploring the event by yourself, being open to meeting new people in the halls, seating right next to you in a session, at breakfast, at social events, etc. Keep a friendly, smiley face at all times, face up. Look at people’s eyes, say hi/good morning even when you don’t know them. Though not in a creepy way of course; be natural. I connected with someone at breakfast who I ended up learning was a project manager. She contacted me after the conference for a potential partnership.

Have business cards on you at all times! It’s unbelievable how people don’t take business cards or don’t take enough. Take around 50 cards per day. It’s more than enough. It’s better to have some left than running out of them. Asking people to take a picture of your last card is, in my opinion, mind you, embarrassing.

When exchanging business cards, make notes on the person’s card, don’t rely on your memory. I had never done that before (never thought it was necessary), I started doing it at ATA 58, but it wasn’t enough. When handling cards post-conference I obviously forgot things. For example, at the Exhibit Hall and the Job Fair you will meet dozens of recruiters. However, some of them may not work with your language pair or area of specialization. If you don’t write it down on the card, you may forget and end up following up with the company anyway post-conference, showing lack of attention and care. Possible notes: where you met the person (Exhibit Hall, Job Fair, Brainstorm Networking and which round, speaker, etc.), if you should follow-up or not and why, your personal impressions, etc.

Last but not least, have fun!

After the conference, wait for about two weeks before following up, so you can give people a chance to settle down or even contact you first. When contacting them, don’t assume they will remember you. Briefly recapitulate where and how you met, and attach your visual CV so they can easily remember you.

My post is already too long, so now I’ll leave it up to you: Do you have any other tips to add?

Guest post: Plain language and translation

Welcome back, dear readers!

Missed me and my wonderful contributors? I have just returned from a much-deserved 20-day vacation, during which time I did not work at all nor post on social media and on the blog. However, before and after those 20 days, of course things were/are hectic, so that is why I have been absent from the blog. Bear with me for a while, and I promise it will be worth it. I have been working in the background, inviting people, having post ideas, so I will come back with our regular editorial calendar at full speed.

And now let’s return in great style with a dear and talented colleague I had the pleasure of meeting at last IAPTI’s Conference, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in April, Joanna Richardson.

Welcome, Joanna!

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Image provided by the author

Plain Language and Translation: Think of the Reader

My work: plain language instructor for professionals

While not actually working as a translator, my job for the past 15 years at Argentina’s largest law firm, teaching lawyers how to write in plain English and editing their published work, has kept me closely in contact with the difficulties that professionals face when writing in English as a second language.

Translating complex legal texts into English, and making them understandable for foreign clients is a daily challenge, but don’t worry, plain language can help!

What is plain language?

A communication is in plain language if its wording, structure, and design are so clear that the intended audience can easily find what they need, understand what they find, and use that information.

Source: International Plain Language Federation

 How did it all start?

Quintilian was talking about plain language back in Roman times. But the modern plain language movement kicked off in the 1970s, when grassroots consumer rights associations started to ask their governments to improve their documents. In the UK, in 1974, two elderly ladies died of hypothermia after not being able to fill in a form for fuel subsidies: the Plain English Campaign, still going strong, came into being as result of this tragedy. In the USA the New York Tax Law was revised into plain language in 1978 in response to consumer pressure.

Plain language around the world

Today, the UK is a leading example of this trend and the government website gov.uk has won awards for both design and plain language. In the USA, the Plain Writing Act was enacted in 2010 and around the world, both English-speaking and other, there are many instances of plain language legislation and its positive effects for citizens, and how it saves money for both private and public institutions. The two NGOs: Clarity and PLAIN (Plain Language Association International) have many examples of plain language worldwide on their websites. And the Center for Plain Language, a US-based NGO, also has many examples.

The EU is one international organization that has been aware of this problem for some time. In 1998 they published a booklet on clear translations called Fight the Fog, but the situation deteriorated as the EU grew and took on more languages. In 2011 the booklet was updated by plain English expert Martin Cutts, author of the Oxford Guide to Plain English, and was published in 23 of the EU’s languages: How to write clearly. This booklet can be downloaded free here and has lots of tips on how to avoid EU-speak and improve translations. But even so, it is not mandatory in the EU so many of the suggestions go unheeded. For many languages this is still their only plain language resource.

Plain language for translators

We are not talking about plain language in literature, but official government documentation, forms, contracts and legal writing, the sort of things that citizens have to deal with every day on and offline. These kinds of documents are often written in very complex language and when they are translated, things only go from bad to worse.

Who are these kinds of official documents written for?

The people who have to read them are pushed for time and these days, generally reading them on a small screen. We need to think of our readers today, particularly when translating. Getting the message over to the reader without losing their attention is a constant challenge. And plain language is a great tool.

Bear in mind these 8 recommendations for plain language in translation:

  1. Write short sentences – even if this means chopping up an excessively long sentence and rewriting it into 2 or 3 sentences.
  2. Use active voice – the passive voice is useful but is always longer and less direct. It fails to mention the doer, so can be ambiguous.
  3. Avoid nominalizations – like information or application. Use the verb form like inform or apply to make your writing stronger.
  4. Avoid sexist language – in English it is not acceptable to use the male pronoun to refer to both genders and the modern tendency is non-binary, using the gender-neutral pronoun they in the singular.
  5. Use everyday words – and if you must use jargon, explain it.
  6. Avoid the negative – it is not a clear way of thinking.
  7. Use personal pronouns – address your reader directly.
  8. Avoid shall which has an ambiguous meaning that lends itself to confusion. Use must for obligation and the present tense when something is simply a statement.

So, next time you are translating a government form or a financial document, first think of your reader and translate it into plain language!

What an insightful post, Joanna! Thanks a lot for your kind and rich contribution!

About the author
joanna-richardsonJoanna Richardson
 is a British national who has made Buenos Aires, Argentina her home.
With a background in literature and translation, since 2002 Joanna has taught plain English writing skills to Spanish-speaking lawyers at Argentina’s leading law firm, Marval, O’Farrell & Mairal.
More recently she has applied her expertise from the clear communications field to coach professionals in public speaking.
Joanna enjoys creative writing and making chutney in her spare time.
Website: www.plainenglish.com.ar
Contact: plainenglishargentina@gmail.com
Twitter: @jomrichardson

 

 

Guest post: Os benefícios da massagem

O que massagem tem a ver com tradução? Tem tudo a ver!

Há alguns anos, tive dores musculares horríveis que só a massagem resolveu. Foi quando a Denise entrou na minha vida. Desde então, não fico sem massagem pelo menos uma vez por mês. Por isso, resolvi convidá-la para escrever no blog. Espero que gostem.

Seja bem-vinda, Denise! 🙂

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Crédito: rawpixel.comUnsplash

Você conhece a massoterapia?

Bom, com certeza, já deve ter ouvido falar de massagem!

Pois é! A massoterapia vem sendo cada vez mais utilizada e muitos são seus benefícios. Mas a pergunta é: o que é e como surgiu essa técnica?

Desde que a humanidade surgiu, apareceu também a massagem. Isso porque o toque é a forma mais primitiva e intuitiva de cuidar do corpo. Quando sentimos ou batemos qualquer parte do corpo, nossa reação é de friccionar ou segurar o local afetado tentando diminuir a dor.

A origem da palavra “massoterapia” vem do grego antigo, que traduzido significa “amassar”, ou seja, massagem é a manipulação de tecidos moles do corpo com fins terapêuticos. As culturas antigas utilizavam, também, óleos e ervas medicinais durante os métodos de tratamento como forma de promover bem-estar geral e de proteger o corpo de lesões e infecções por meio de fricções. O Do-In, originário da China, é a técnica mais antiga de massagem, tendo sido a precursora de várias outras através do tempo. Como exemplo, podemos citar o Shiatsu, Ayurveda, Tuiná, massagem clássica, Shantala etc. Há registros de desenhos grafados em túmulos, murais e cerâmicas sobre o uso das técnicas de massagem com mais de 5.000 anos na China, Japão, Egito e Pérsia. Entretanto, os chineses foram os primeiros a reconhecer e sistematizar as propriedades curativas da massagem, tendo o livro mais antigo sobre o assunto: o Nei Ching, conhecido como “Livro do Imperador Amarelo”, escrito em 2.800 a.C.

Benefícios/Indicações

A massagem não é apenas para relaxamento. Ela é muito utilizada para alívio de dores musculares e tensionais, mobiliza o sistema linfático e vascular periférico, melhorando a circulação sanguínea, regulando a pressão arterial e eliminando toxinas e resíduos metabólicos, restabelece e mobiliza as articulações ao promover melhora nos movimentos e nutrição destas, promove o bom funcionamento de órgãos e vísceras, reduz o estresse e a ansiedade por meio da liberação da dopamina (neurotransmissor responsável pela sensação de bem-estar), além de proporcionar maior elasticidade da pele.

Não há contraindicações da massagem, sendo indicada inclusive para bebês, crianças, idosos e gestantes.

Dicas

Muitas pessoas têm procurado a massagem como forma de tratar e aliviar dores provocadas por Lesões por Esforço Repetitivo (LER), tendinites, tensões musculares, normalmente ocasionadas por estresse no trabalho, má postura ou sobrecarga de peso. Pessoas que trabalham muito tempo sentadas costumam sofrer muito com isso. Problemas nos punhos e ombros e dores na região lombar são os mais comuns. Por isso, seguem algumas dicas de como aliviar essas tensões temporariamente. Lembrando: sempre procure um profissional para avaliar e tratar o seu caso.

  • Usando uma bolinha (dessas com cravinhos), faça movimentos circulares leves nos braços e nas mãos. Pode-se, também, usar essa mesma bolinha para massagear os ombros, os pés (pise sobre a bolinha e deslize o pé sobre ela), costas (use uma bolinha mais firme e maior, como uma bolinha de tênis, coloque-a na parede e pressione suas costas contra ela, movimentando levemente sobre o local dolorido).

 

  • Alongue-se! A cada 1 ou 2 horas, faça intervalos para um alongamento. Não precisa fazer todos de uma vez, mas escolha uma região e faça um alongamento de pelo menos 15 segundos. Por exemplo, alongar pescoço: segure a cabeça inclinada para um lado, sentindo o alongamento por 15 segundos, e depois troque o lado por mais 15 segundos.

 

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  • Quando for passar algum creme corporal nas pernas, comece pelos tornozelos e vá deslizando para cima. Assim, já estará estimulando a circulação dessa região.

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Apesar de todas essas dicas, não dispense uma massagem profissional. Além de aliviar as tensões e as dores, você se sentirá relaxado, tranquilo e com certeza vai querer voltar para mais algumas sessões. E aí, vai uma massagem hoje?

Sobre a autora
Foto-0020Denise Fertrin R. Franco é fisioterapeuta graduada pela Fundação Hermínio Ometto. Especialista em Osteopatia pelo Colégio Brasileiro de Osteopatia (CBO Piracicaba). Massoterapeuta e Instrutora de Pilates na clínica Espaço Vitali e estúdio Poise Pilates.

Greatest Women in Translation: Marta Dziurosz

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Created by Érick Tonin

Welcome back to our Greatest Women in Translation interview series!

Women in Translation month is over this year, way buzzier than the previous years, but we can keep doing our job here, interviewing and recognizing the great women we have in translation.

Please welcome Marta Dziurosz, nominated by Canan Marasligil.

Marta Dziurosz

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1. The first literary translation job you found on your own was at a book fair in Poland: you say you introduced yourself “at the stall of every publisher, left them some hand-made materials […] and one of them bit.” If you had to do it again, would you do anything differently? What advice would you give to those who are starting out and would like to do the same thing you did?

That was a surprisingly successful strategy for a completely different time and place – I wanted to start translating from English into Polish, and it was perhaps ten years ago. The market of translated literature in Poland is massive, which has all the predictable problems, but it also means it was comparatively easy to start working this way. My relationship with that one publishing house lasted for seven years and I was very happy to be working with them. The thing is I am now doing it again, but the other way round – translating from Polish into English, which is a completely different kettle of fish. The market is tiny and because the resources for publishing translations are so much more stretched, you need to be more canny when introducing yourself if you want to be successful. I won’t lie – it does help to be in London and meet people personally, but exciting things in translation-focused publishing are also happening in the North, with the Northern Fiction Alliance and the focus on translation during the Edinburgh festival. Edinburgh, just like the London Book Fair, the Literary Translation and Creative Writing Summer School in Norwich, Translate at City and International Translation Day, are great focal points of the year when you get a massive shot of industry knowledge, so it’s great to try and be there. People on ETN (the Emerging Translators’ Network) usually have good tips on where to stay. In general, preparation is key – before you pitch or introduce yourself, know what you want to do and who you want to talk to. On the other hand, though, chance encounters and conversations are also great and potentially fruitful. Finally, read widely in your language to see what you like, and read as many books as you can translated into English from your language, see how they do it and ask yourself why.

2. Being a non-native translator of English yourself, you talk a lot about this controversial subject (here, for example). You say you are “increasingly confused about who a native speaker really is” (link above). Why is that?

I want to help make it less controversial. The reason why I am confused about this term is that you’d have to be wilfully ignorant not to see that people arrive at languages at various stages of their lives and through various circumstances.

Language competence, cultural sensitivity, suppleness of phrase, a sly sense of humour, an ear for nuance – these are not exclusive to “native” speakers.

The division between “native” and “non-native” defines the latter negatively, as if through some sort of lack, and “non-native” is frequently used as a shorthand for “in need of linguistic instruction”. I wrote an article about this for The Linguist and a good few people emailed me saying they’ve been holding themselves back in their careers because they felt it wasn’t the done thing to translate into a language you’d come into later in life. Isn’t that a shame?

3. You work at Pan Macmillan, drafting and negotiating most of their translators’ contracts. As you say, it “is an interesting peek behind the scenes” and gives you “the chance to mediate between the two sides of the deal” (link in Q1). What have you learned, as a translator, with this experience? And what advice would you give to translators regarding contracts based on this experience?

As a translator, remember that the person you’re negotiating your contract with (sometimes it will be a dedicated contracts person, sometimes not) is a human being, and not your enemy. Both sides want the deal to happen (preferably on good terms and with the minimum of hassle). Don’t be afraid to ask questions and to negotiate for your preferred terms, but pick your battles and know when to gracefully accept a compromise. Remember that the terms of your contract will to some extent depend on the terms of the “head” contract – that is, the contract your publisher signs to buy rights in the book with the original rights holder (for example, the publisher of the original Spanish book you’re translating into English). If you’re a member of the Translators’ Association, you can use their free contract vetting service, or you can listen to a podcast of an event about this I chaired at Free Word, to cover the basics.

4. You have recently presented a keynote on scents in literature. “The purpose of the talk was to reflect on the many ways in which scent is used in literature to evoke emotions and tell stories,” as you point out in the event’s blog, where you also provide a reading list related to the topic. Could you explain in more details what translating scent is all about?

We had a whole panel discussion about it at Free Word. I am very interested in the transmission of ideas; in this case between words and scents and vice versa. The perfumer Thomas Fontaine recently said in an interview: “Perfume is a story; we get a story from a, for example, fashion brand, and we translate that into fragrances”. At the Free Word event, it was fascinating to discuss the embodiment of a brief into a fragrance, and the translation of scent into literature, as well as translating a book about scents from French into English. When making a transition between languages, or between scent and text, what gets carried across? You can dig pretty deep in that topic, and Ricarda Vidal, one of the participants of the discussion, did just that in her Translation Games project.

5. You are an Associate of London’s Free Word Centre, and were their 2015-2016 Translator in Residence. As a TiR, last year, as part of Free Word’s celebrations around International Women’s Day, you chaired a panel discussion on women in translation, a topic that has everything to do with this series. How can we tackle this gender imbalance in international literature and make a difference? Do you think initiatives such as Women in Translation help somehow?

Of course I am incensed that we still need to discuss this, but we do still need to discuss this. A few recent lists of recommendations for books in translation included barely any women authors, and in terms of review space (dramatically scarce as it is), percentages of books in translation published and event/panel appearances the field is still far from level. The initiative you mention, the new Warwick Prize for Women in Translation, And Other Stories’ idea of publishing only women in 2018 – looking at the history of publishing and the endless years when focusing exclusively on men didn’t even warrant a comment or a moment of reflection, I’d personally say they are very necessary. They make us reflect a bit more about what we read, where we find our recommendations, who we support with our money, attention and time, whose perspective we find worthwhile.

6. As an advocate of Polish literature, what book, in particular, do you recommend for someone who would like to start exploring it? As you already recommended a few that have not been translated yet in your interview to Jen Calleja (link in Q1), it can be one that has been already translated.

The most beautiful Polish book I’ve recently read in translation was Olga Tokarczuk’s Flights, translated by Jennifer Croft and published by Fitzcarraldo. I reviewed it for the Glasgow Review of Books – it’s a beautiful, tender look at people in transit, a personal encyclopedia of travel, movement, migration.

7. Now it’s your turn to nominate our next Great Woman in Translation.

I’d like to nominate the eminent German translator Charlotte Collins, whose work I admire – this is for very selfish reasons, I’d just like to know more about her practice!

Mindfulness is the new multitasking

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Stop!

Hey, hey, slow down.

Now breathe.

Yes, breathe. In and out. Deep breaths. Preferably with your eyes closed. Also, take the chance to check your posture and pay attention to all parts of your body. I will not continue until you do so.

Ok, ready?

How are you feeling? Hopefully, less hectic, and more relaxed. And now you are ready, and able to read and enjoy this post (at least I hope so).

 

The modern world is full of distractions. Everything is for yesterday. If something happens in the other side of the globe, we know live, as if we were there. We are required to do more, accomplish more, be more productive. Meanwhile, time seems increasingly shorter. Everything happens at the same time: you are crazily translating something to be delivered in a couple of hours, someone texts you, another person tags you on Facebook, you get a couple of emails, your phone rings. And all these things usually demand your prompt attention. Amidst this crazy routine, we can even forget to breathe! We forget we have a body that also needs our attention, but since it is quiet – not making a fuss as all the other things requiring our immediate attention –, we completely forget about it. I got short of breath only by writing this paragraph! Phew!

People proudly say they are multitaskers. As if this were something good. Well, here is the naked truth: it is NOT. First of all, you think you are able to multitask, but you are actually task-switching. This process can actually “cause a 40% loss in productivity,” increase your stress levels, have a bad effect on memory, harm your creativity. This article provides a small test that proves that the brain does not actually handle multiple tasks at once, as we believe.

It can be easy to rush through life without stopping to notice much

Have you heard of mindfulness?

It is a modern concept that has been increasingly discussed nowadays, and it means having a deep awareness of the present. It is thus the complete opposite of multitasking. Applying this concept to our everyday lives not only makes us happier and healthier but also more productive, resulting in quality outcomes, since we are 100% focused on what we are doing at the moment.

Think with me: It is better working five hours of your day totally focused on each task at a time than “working” for nine hours multitasking and not actually producing anything concrete, right? If you don’t believe me (neither in the researches), try for yourself one day.

I usually work at one-hour chunks. During this one hour, I focus 100% on whatever I have to do: translate, write a blog post, work on my finances. Then I take a quick break during which time I can check and reply to emails, check and reply to text messages, fetch something to eat, etc. Social media usually has its own time set aside, so I do not keeping checking it throughout the day. This can also be considered mindfulness, in my opinion.

Gym time for me is also precious. No phone, except for listening to music. But even that I seem to be getting tired of. I seem to be incresingly fond of exercising in silence, just paying full attention to each movement, my body, my thoughts.

And weekends are also perfect for practicing mindfulness. A friend of mine usually say, “Doing nothing is also productive.” Resting, having fun, relaxing, laughing, sleeping are also essential for productivity.

So what do you say? Let’s try less multitasking and more mindfulness? Who is with me?

 

I also suggest reading: Why Should We Slow Down? The Lost Art of Patience

ConVTI draw

And the winner is...

Photo by Allef Vinicius on Unsplash, edited on Canva

And the winner of ConVTI’s free registration is…

Priscila França

Sorteador

Ganhador

Congratulations!

The event’s organizers will send you an email on the next few days explaining how to register.

If you were not the lucky winner but are interested in attending this amazing event, we still have four 20% discounts available here. All you have to do is leave a comment on the link’s post until August 18. It’s as simple as that.

I will send the registration link to all ten winners of the discount by email soon.

Are you lost and have absolutely no idea what we are talking about? Click on the link above for more information.

Thank you all for participating! And a special thanks to the amazing women behind ConVTI, Gio Lester and Márcia Nabrzecki, for coming up with the event, organizing it and offering us the free registration and discounts. You rock!

See you on August 26-27. After all, I am also attending the event. 😉

Guest post: YNAB para freelancers

Sem bem-vindos de volta a mais uma publicação convidada!

Neste mês, nosso convidado, o tradutor e intérprete Felipe Cichini Simões, fala sobre as vantagens e como usar o aplicativo YNAB (You Need A Budget) para controlar suas finanças.

Bem-vindo, Felipe!

Ou pra quem recebe em dias irregulares

Este artigo pressupõe que você já sabe como o YNAB funciona ou já tem pelo menos alguma intimidade com o método e quer adequar seu funcionamento pro seu estilo de vida de receitas com entrada irregular, seja você freelancer ou algum profissional com fluxo de entradas semelhante. Caso contrário, comece lendo sobre o método aqui.

Se você não recebe um salário regrado todo mês, ter e manter um orçamento é ainda mais valioso pra organizar suas finanças e não fazer lambança com seus pagamentos. A lógica é mais ou menos a mesma, mudando a frequência com que ela é aplicada: você continua seguindo o ciclo de (1) inserir os recebimentos quando eles entram; (2) dar uma função pra cada centavo; (3) gastar de acordo com o que você orçou; (4) reajustar conforme necessário.

A pergunta que você precisa fazer sempre é: “O que essa grana precisa pagar antes de eu receber de novo?” Isso vai te dar a real dimensão das suas prioridades financeiras até que entre a grana do próximo freela. Pra isso, acredito que algumas dicas que eu desenvolvi no meu próprio orçamento possam ser úteis.

Organize suas categorias por prioridade

Sabendo o que você precisa pagar primeiro, fica mais lógico já ir fazendo o orçamento do boleto que chega primeiro. Uma boa maneira de ter essa visão é colocar o dia de vencimento de cada conta entre parênteses depois do nome da categoria e reordenar de acordo:

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Observe que a categoria Impostos tem dois vencimentos, mas eu ordeno pela data mais baixa. Assim, você sabe de cara o que vence primeiro e evita atrasar pagamentos. Reordenar os grupos de categorias (na figura acima, Contas) também ajuda a visualizar em primeiro lugar o que tem mais prioridade. É uma maneira de separar o supérfluo do essencial. Digamos que você tenha recebido o suficiente pra custear suas contas e entra o pagamento de um segundo freela nesse mesmo mês. Suas contas já estão cobertas, você segue o barco e orça o restante das suas categorias, repetindo o ciclo 1234 acima sempre que entrar mais dinheiro.

A regra adicional do freelancer, regra 5

Essa regra foi desenvolvida por mim, mas acho que é igualmente essencial se você tem um fluxo irregular de receitas: crie um fundo contra essas irregularidades.

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A ideia é que você abasteça essa categoria com sobras de receitas de um mês bom para gastar dinheiro dela num mês abaixo do esperado. No meu caso, ela tem esse nome esquisito, Fundo contra a renda variável, mas que funciona pra eu me lembrar de me proteger contra uma eventual ausência de receita prolongada. E lembre-se de que essas sobras vão se acumulando com o tempo, então qualquer centavo é muito válido na hora de acumular pra uma eventual emergência ou pra viver com mais tranquilidade quando aquele cliente enrolar pra pagar.

Definir uma meta de saldo de categoria é interessante pra saber quanto falta pra chegar lá.

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Quem é freelancer sabe que isso acontece sem a gente se programar. Já fiquei três meses sem nenhum trabalho e gastei todas as minhas reservas que tinha poupado no ano anterior (curiosamente, foi logo antes de eu me dedicar a aprender a usar o YNAB). Isso me serviu de exemplo, e hoje eu estimo que preciso de três meses de gastos guardados nesse fundo pra ter tranquilidade plena, mas isso vai variar de acordo com seu contexto e é algo que você vai ter de estimar e decidir por conta própria.

Com a categoria selecionada, no painel à direita do YNAB, você consegue definir uma meta (GOALS, imagem acima) de atingir um saldo específico praquela categoria (primeira opção) sem data específica. Se você sabe que há um período de baixa atividade na sua profissão, use a segunda opção e concentre-se em chegar até aquele saldo até o mês anterior da época das vacas magras.

Pra ser 100% honesto, até hoje eu ainda não cheguei a acumular os três meses, porém, também não cheguei a precisar. O YNAB ajuda tanto na organização, você enxerga seu dinheiro de maneira totalmente diferente, fora que a regra 4 (envelheça seu dinheiro) já seria semelhante a se preparar pra vários meses de gastos com antecedência. Mas eu percebi que esse fundo tem uma função de conforto psicológico importante: eu vejo que estou amparado e fico mais tranquilo!

Envelhecer seu dinheiro significa que o que está sendo gasto hoje foi recebido há 35 dias (nesse caso).

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Recapitulando: priorize e economize. Tudo isso pode soar impossível de atingir, mas com o passar do tempo dá pra perceber que você vai conseguir programar seus gastos com cada vez mais antecedência (a regra 4 começa a funcionar praticamente sozinha). E respeitando a regra 2, você não é pego de surpresa e desenvolve gradualmente essa tranquilidade financeira. Não é algo que acontece do dia pra noite, mas que você desenvolve em meses e anos de orçamento, disciplina, planejamento, organização. Aí termina e recomeça. E com organização a gente vai muito mais longe e com muito mais tranquilidade na profissão, conseguindo orientar o foco pra onde ele realmente é necessário.

Sobre o autor
Felipe_foto-perfilFelipe Cichini Simões é intérprete e tradutor profissional com mais de 10 anos de experiência em tradução escrita, localização de aplicativos e interpretação de conferências e eventos ao vivo, sommelier de cerveja e gestor bem-sucedido das finanças pessoais há mais de 4 anos. Site: http://mantrad.com.br

Greatest Women in Translation: Canan Marasligil

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Created by Erick Tonin

Welcome back to our Greatest Women in Translation interview series, dear readers!

Today, let’s welcome Canan Marasligil.

Canan Marasligil

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1. I have to start by mentioning I absolutely loved your website! How creative to add a video to the landing page! Do you think your video attracts more people (especially potential clients) to your website and somehow make them navigate through it to learn more about yourself?

I don’t necessarily think about attracting more people to my website, I think that if they are already there, it means they found me in some way (probably via social media). I like playing with the web – I make my own websites (I have to thank Squarespace for offering such fantastic tools to play with) – and I am interested in how people interact online. So, to me, it is a matter of expressing my own creativity and offering as much interesting content as possible throughout the online spaces I inhabit.

2. On your website, you mention you “have started working with video to explore the links between literature and images.” How does that work?

Although I mostly work with words – as a writer, as a literary translator, as an editor – I am passionate about visual media, and am especially interested in the interaction between writing and images. That’s why I’m into comics, into screenwriting, and that is also why I started to create my own visual language through video. You don’t need much material nowadays to capture high quality images, so it is all about your eye: what do you see, what stories do you want to tell. I was inspired to start my YouTube videos thanks to French writer François Bon who has been creating a wide range of videos on his YouTube channel to talk about literature – he does readings (he is an amazing performer), hosts writing workshops, has a regular “service de presse” where he shares other writer’s work and much more – so I have joined this online community of literature makers he has created on YouTube (I know he probably won’t like me saying he created it, but he did). I have to admit, it is motivating to have an audience ready to watch what you are doing (even if very small, also, it depends how you look at it: I don’t think I could easily fill a room with 100 people which I am doing with a video and I think is amazing). I’ve been told I have an artistic approach to translation, so I think my video-making is also part of that urge to create. I see the world in a certain manner, I am inspired, visually, by the world that surrounds me, so I try to capture how I feel about it, and then edit it into short videos. It isn’t so different than writing actually, it’s all about stories you want to tell. I’m just using a different medium to do so.

3. You also mention “Translation off the page” is one of your favorite topics. Could you elaborate, and tell us why you like it so much?

I have to admit I do more translation work “off the page” than “on the page”. To start, I am not earning all my income from translation – if I would do that, I’d need to translate a few more books per year, which I don’t. This is a personal and deliberate choice, and I have many reasons for it. I am a hyperactive person (people who know me reading this will probably laugh now nodding) and I get bored very quickly when I translate, not because of the work – 90% of the time, I select what I want to work on so I usually love what I translate – but I am a slow translator, I usually don’t work on more than four pages in a day, and I am drained after, not just intellectually but emotionally. You see, I pour all my heart into a translation project, it is not just a job to me. This is why I am also picky with the projects I choose to work on. I recently accepted to translate work I have not chosen myself, and I regretted it.

To me, translating someone’s work means that I believe not only in their literary merits, but in their voice, as a person, as an artist, what they stand for.

I don’t separate the work from the artist. I am not talking about character here, I don’t care how nice or (un)friendly a writer is, I am talking about sincerity and values someone stands for. So, if at any point I feel my values are not aligned with an author’s, I cannot translate them. You have to remember that out of all the languages I could have translated from (I was trained to work in English, Spanish, French), I chose to focus on Turkish (the language my parents spoke to me in) and contemporary literatures from Turkey, and in the current political context, there is no way I can be apolitical about my choices. I guess this kind of “off the page” work is close to what one could call activism. Other types of “off the page” work I do is through workshops, and the idea behind these activities is to give tools to people – children, young people, adults – to play with languages and be creative using their own existing linguistic skills. I always start my workshops by asking participants about the languages in their lives – not how many languages they speak, read or write, but which languages surround them daily – by framing the question in this way, I already tell them: see, multilingualism is all around us, and we are all experiencing it, in one way or the other.

4. Could you tell us a bit about your project City in Translation, and pinpoint one or two fascinating aspects about it that you have come across during your exploration?

City in Translation is part of my work taking translation off the page. It started from my own urban explorations – I am what you can call a “flâneuse” – I like walking across cities. I do this a lot, and I don’t mean just walking from one place to another, it is a practice I am very attached to. Wherever I go, I always set aside some time to do these city walks by myself, camera in hand, without any specific purpose. I am interested in interacting with everything that surrounds me in cities, especially through translation. This means that I look at written words mostly (I could work on sound, but I haven’t focused on that yet), I search for the traces we are leaving across urban spaces, usually in many different languages. Sometimes I understand the languages, sometimes I don’t. It is one way to observe the world we live in. Through this process, I also learn so much about the different cities I walk in. Languages can tell you about the history of a neighbourhood, about its demographics, about the political context, and much more… So, I use this personal and artistic practice to develop content, like I did with the Yearning for Turkish exhibition I created and which was shown in St Andrews and in Norwich, and the various workshops I do with City in Translation. With Yearning for Turkish, I realised that this constant search for languages across cities was also one way for me to find “home” – my understanding of home being in movement, even if I keep seeing one of my main languages – Turkish – everywhere I go.

5. As a social media lover myself, I am also widely present on different social channels, and I am frequently asked how I find time to juggle them and manage to work at the same time. Well, I cannot help it but ask you the same question, since you have an even wider social presence than me, I think. What is your secret? (By the way, you may have noticed I have already started following you everywhere! )

I love social media because I love interacting with people. I met so many interesting people on social media. I am personally active on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, and all my profiles are public. I usually share things I am interested in, and bits of my own life without revealing intimate or private moments. So, if I post a selfie, there will usually be a story behind. Sometimes it can just be about showing people I’m happy and I love myself, and if it can help other women (even just one) loving themselves unapologetically, it makes me happy. I also post a lot about social justice issues, about freedom of expression, about women’s rights. I think social media can be a useful tool for creating one’s voice and empowering oneself and each other, to create solidarity, and to show the world that you (and people like you) exist, but not necessarily in a self-centred and narcissistic manner (while we can argue posting a selfie can be a narcissistic act, I am not interested in doing couch psychology and judging people). Also, people follow you on social media only if they want to. I don’t really care about being unfollowed, I am at peace with how I use social media. One thing that’s true though, it can eat your time up, and sometimes I do have the feeling that I am wasting a lot of time on social media, time I could use to write for example. But I think we’re all still learning how to use it the best way we can.

6. You have participated (and still do) in a few residencies for translators, in different countries. Could you tell us a bit about the experiences you have had and the benefits of being a Translator in Residence, in your opinion?

I love residencies. I have done a few, and I am currently doing one with La Contre Allée, a wonderful indie publisher in Lille, France. My first residency was with the Free Word Centre in London in 2013, and that truly changed my life. So many good friendships have started with this residency, and I am still working with many people I met during my time at Free Word. I am interested in residencies where you interact with local communities, not with residencies where you are given a room and space to write. I already have that in my home – life in Amsterdam is good and I am very privileged in that sense. If I travel to spend days, weeks or sometimes months somewhere else, I want to meet people, I want to learn from locals, from the different communities – with Free Word, it was about meeting all the wonderful organisations working around freedom of expression, but also with schools and more, in Senegal, I have learned from local artists, writers and musicians, but also from villagers on the impact of climate change, in Copenhagen I have interacted with academics and researchers working on topics about cities and culture, and in Lille, I am working with libraries, the city council, publishers… I learn from each one of them and I bring my own expertise too, it is a true exchange of ideas, knowledge and lots of fun too.

7. Although I could go on with the questions, let’s wrap up and find out who you pick to be our next Great Woman in Translation.

I want to nominate Marta Dziurosz, who was a translator in residence at Free Word Centre a couple of years after me. She is working in Polish and English. I especially love that she debunks the “native language” myth, which I’m sure she can tell you more about.