Who translates, who benefits?

Digital Translation Work in Posthuman Multilingual Societies

Translation technologies and digital translation work are amongst the major transformational drivers in contemporary multilingual societies. Translators and interpreters shape and service the communication needs across a huge array of (institutional and industrial) agents belonging to different language communities. Most research on digital translation work tends to ascribe decision-making processes to the extended and distributed cognitions of human agents. However, with the steady intrusion of novel technologies, the stakeholders in transcultural communication – whether translators, interpreters, educators or researchers – have developed differing attitudes towards digital translation work. On the one hand, a long-standing discourse of technoscientific and industrial triumphalism keeps hailing the benefits of translation technologies for education and learning as well as for the optimization of linguistic data flows. The utopian dream of overcoming Babel by means of neural machine translation, however, has come to be increasingly challenged by an emerging critical approach towards the all too ready acceptance of the apparent liberating powers of automated translation tools.

This workshop critically assesses the phenomenon of digitalized translation in, as we would like to call it, posthuman multilingual settings. Based on an assessment of the role of the translation machine in the field of Translation Studies, we will debate the changing demands and challenges for translators and interpreters in digitalized societies, the question of translator and interpreter identity in globalized translation flows, new skills profiles for translators and interpreters generated by modern translation technologies, and the human-machine interaction continuum in digital translation work.

Come and join us to follow a lively discussion and a critical assessment of the wide-ranging implications concerning digitalized translation work in multilingual societies!

Organizers: Stefan Baumgarten, Şebnem Bahadır-Berzig

No registration is required to attend this event.