Every year, since 1953, September 30th has been dedicated to celebrating and paying tribute to the meticulous and important work that translators do in their quiet profession.
It is no secret that globalization over the past few decades has contributed to the demand of translation work. Through technological and industrial advancements, the world has become a smaller place. Translators surely help to bridge the gap.
“Without translation, I would be limited to the borders of my own country. The translator is my most important ally, he/she /they introduce me to the world” – Italo Calvino
Definitions Make the Heart Grow Fonder (or at least provide a closer level of understanding)
But what does translation mean exactly? Google’s dictionary provided by Oxford Languages defines Translation as “the process of translating words or text from one language into another.”…a vague and colourless definition that might do the profession more harm than good. Dive a bit further, shall we?
The Globalization and Localization Association (GALA) presents a more passionate and appropriate definition: “Translation is the communication of meaning from one language (the source) to another language (the target).”
The keyword here is communication. It is a broad term that is generally taken for granted. It is a truly multi-faceted concept with endless explanations, applicable situations, and ways of accomplishing it. It is often considered an essential concept, for example, in relationships, diplomacy, and social skills. There are often many emotions attached to it. The underlying role of communication in translation is no different. Translation is not grey and basic. It is so much more than taking words in one language and turning them into a few words in another.
“Translation is not a matter of words only: it is a matter of making intelligible a whole culture.” – Anthony Burgess
Finding the Words for a World in a Crisis
This year’s theme of International Translation Day is aptly titled “Finding the Words for a World in a Crisis”.
The year 2020 has rendered the world practically speechless. We don’t have the words to describe our unprecedented experiences and emotions. Or is it that we have many words subconsciously trying to fight their way out all at once? How to capture and communicate these?
Alongside the devastating COVID-19 pandemic have been events and circumstances that have led to people coming together, using their voices and finding the words to draw attention to BLM and other social injustices. Being outspoken. A powerful hashtag.
It has been heavy, this year of 2020. Words can hold a lot of weight and cannot or should not be considered lightly in certain circumstances. This further emphasizes the important profession of the translator, who invests a great deal of time and thought in what s/he writes, in order to avoid incorrect communication because, although they can be quite comical, in certain circumstances words can be equally dangerous.
“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, it goes to his heart.”
– Nelson Mandela
In the Business of Translation
Loretta Murphy Translations is a company dedicated to excellence in the world of communication. With over three decades in the business, the company is committed to serving the needs of clients by understanding the specific requirements of their projects. We provide the fast, accurate service you expect from a large agency, with the heart, knowledge, and personal touch of a local business.
At Loretta Murphy Translations we focus on two language combinations – Portuguese to English and Spanish to English. In doing so, our expertise in these two language combinations contributes to quick turn-around times without sacrificing quality and accuracy in the translation services you need.
Let us help you get started on your next project! Contact us and we will email you back with a free quote.
Written by Maya St. Kitts for Loretta Murphy Translations