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The basic principles of consecutive interpretation

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Maha Sultan

on 23 February 2015

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Transcript of The basic principles of consecutive interpretation

Presented by:
May Al-Hussain Maha Al-Baadi


Manahel Al-Dobayan Nouf Al-Rabiah

Maha Al-Hamed

What do we mean by Understanding?

Understanding in interpretation is not of words but of ideas, for it is ideas that have to be interpreted.
In order to understand ideas you have to know the words, grammar and syntax the speaker is using to express them.


What do you do if you DO NOT know a word or an expression that you hear in a speech?
An interpreter should
UNDERSTAND

ideas
not
words
.
It is possible to understand a speaker's meaning without actually understanding every single word and expression they use, and without having to reproduce all of those terms in the interpretation.
However there are occasions where a word is too important that we need to pay attention to .

Speeches may be of many different kinds
a) Reasoned arguments that present both points of view on a question weighing up pros and cons before arriving at a synthetic conclusion
b) Sequence of logical deductions leading inexorably to the only possible conclusion (from the speaker’s point of view)
3-
Narrative, adopting chronological sequence.
4-
Descriptive
5-
Polemical, where the speaker is hell-bent on convincing the audience
6-
Rhetorical, where the detail of content is secondary or even irrelevant
7-
Stone walling speech, where the speaker goes to considerable lengths to hide their point of view or withhold information

Knowing what is important and what is secondary
in a speech.

WHY?

1-T
he interpreter’s role is also to reflect the tenor, the spirit, the underlying significance of a speaker’s comments, as well as the literal sense. This can only be done if ideas are given their relative importance ¡n the interpretation.



The basic principles of consecutive interpretation
Chapter 2
The Basic Principles of Consecutive Interpretation

Understanding
Analysis
Re-expression
Understanding
How words can be too important that an interpreter should pay attention to.
G
iven the topography of the country, the construction of motorways has been very expensive. The Norwegians have found the solution to their financial problems by imposing
tolls
. And these are pretty expensive. The roads are wonderfully built, and are a pleasure to drive upon, with beautiful scenery, but when the poor drivers get to the end of their journey and have to pay the toll, they certainly feel that their wallets are much lighter.

The key word here is toll,
and if the interpreter does
not know it they can hardly avoid it.

here it is clear that it has to do with the country road construction expenses

How words can be too important that an interpreter should pay attention to.
T
he interpreter can also benefit from working in consecutive by the time they start interpreting they will have heard the whole speech , and should be able to deduce the meaning of toll from the context, given the numbers of clues they have

some of the key element in interpreting an interpreter should be aware of :

Some of the key element in interpreting
an interpreter should be aware of :
I
n order to understand meaning without knowing all the lexical items, and to deduce the meaning from context, the interpreter must have a thorough knowledge of the languages they are working with.

Analysis
1- Reasoned
2- Logical argument

They have two subsidiary categories:

It is necessary for the interpreter to make an analysis of the speech type:
 
1-It will influence the fine-tuning of their listening
2- It will influence the style and content of their interpretation


3-
Narrative, adopting chronological sequence.
4-
Descriptive
5-
Polemical, where the speaker is hell-bent on convincing the audience
6-
Rhetorical, where the detail of content is secondary or even irrelevant
7-
Stone walling speech, where the speaker goes to considerable lengths to hide their point of view or withhold information

If a speaker is putting forward a reasoned line of arguments the interpreter must pay particular attention to the logical connections between ideas. The speaker in this situation has two options:

a)
To navigate to and fro between the two points of view being examined
b)
To present one argument in its entirety and then make a major caesura and present the other point of view

When the delegates are not highlighting a change in tack and the interpreter is not lucky to have link of speech words such as however, notwithstanding, but etc. In such circumstances the interpreter should:

a)
Recognize that this is the turning point used by the speaker to change direction
b)
Make sure it is clear to the audience if the speaker argues black, throws in clearly and then argues white it is perfectly legitimate,
indeed desirable, for the interpreter to argue black, and make a pause to let people know this is the end of a section of the speech

One kind of the logical, reasoned speech is the one-sided argument presenting deductions and syllogisms to prove a point. If it well expressed it should by definition be reasonably easy to interpret.
The problem with this kind of speech is because it is so logically constructed,
if the interpreter make an error the whole construct comes tumbling down.
 
3-
Narrative or chronological speech. It may be a story, history of a country, or activities of various sub-committees. The interpreter must pay due attention to time phrases, dates, and verb tenses. If a speaker does not respect chronology in the original, it is up to the interpreter to decide whether this is deliberate or involuntary.

4-
Descriptive speech may be deceptively difficult as description is ultimately a juxtaposition of a number of items.

The only thing an interpreter can do with description is:

A)
Concentrate as hard as possible

B)
Decide what is the most important information

C)
Remember and note down as much as possible of that




A)
Sensitive and flexible while remaining faithful to the speaker

B)
Remember that the interpreter in a way is the ‘speaker’

C)
Espouse the speaker point of view

D)
Conveying the content of the original

E)
Conveying the tenor of the comments

F)
Conveying the intensity of feelings

G)
It is not for the interpreter to question if the speaker is sacrificing logic or truth to their cause

H)
Interpreters must have the intellectual flexibility to reproduce something they find highly questionable

I)
An interpreter is called a ‘communication professional’, it is their role to help people come together and understand one another. This is a moot view but it can be argued. He can tone down comments in order to take the sting out of a meeting: repeating tactless comments is some cases is in neither of the speaker, nor of the addressee, nor of the proceedings in general

Speeches are polemical in nature and that does not mean they are illogical.
To deal with such a speech the interpreter must be:
5-
Rhetorical speech is when form is more important than content as in dinner speeches, farewell, departing diplomats.
The interpreter should also capture the spirit than the exact detail of the content. That does not mean that the interpreter can relax and that such speech is plain sailing:


a)
Such speeches usually contain specific references involving proper names and titles.
b)
Rhetorical speeches can be difficult precisely because of their form, use of images, metaphors, similes, flowery language, and jokes.

Interpreters have to mobilize all their resources in their mother tongue or other target language to do justice to such speakers.

6-
Stonewalling is a rhetorical speech that the interpreter should follow the
speaker as closely as possible. Speaking at length while saying nothing is a considerable art and any deviation from the text by the interpreter may well install a meaning the speaker wished to avoid.

This is in fact an illustration of one of the golden rules of interpreting, valid in all circumstances: the interpreter must make no substantive addition to a speech. By adding something he might be making a mistake.

Identification of main ideas
Another key element in interpreting is the kind of attention required
interpreters must seize the meaning in a split second and therefore must listen constantly in an active, attentive way always asking themselves
What does the speaker mean?
what are the ideas they want to express?

This form of listening is not a natural gift it has to be
learned
it requires concentration and great attention to any meaning and word held in the conversation beside the ability to interpret at the same time which means the ability to stay
alert
at all times.

2- T
he interpreter may be under pressure because of the intrinsic difficulty of the speech or the speed of the speaker, and will therefore
have to omit one or more elements of the original.

3-

T
he recall of the speech necessary in consecutive will be easier if the interpreter has a number of key ideas rather than having a sequence of ideas all on an equal footing.

4-

I
t is useful for all interpreters to
be capable of providing a summary of a speech, since when delegates are really pressed for time the chairperson may actually ask explicitly for the interpreter to give not a full interpretation but a summary.

What are the main ideas of a speech?
M
ain ideas can be identified by “ S+V+O “
Elements in a speech that fall outside this analysis are at best secondary such as adj and adv.

EX:
(
The traditional, wooden houses and baroque churches left by the early Spanish settlers were all devastated by the earthquake of a magnitude of seven on the Richter scale
)

T
he epithets traditional, wooden and baroque are all of secondary importance. The most important thing is that an earthquake has destroyed the buildings.


The key word here is toll,
and if the interpreter does
not know it they can hardly avoid it.

Identification of the main ideas:
I
f the sentence now becomes:

(
The traditional, wooden houses were all devastated, but the baroque, stone churches left by the early Spanish settlers somehow remained standing
)

I
t is clear that a contrast is being drawn between wooden and stone, and the relative resistance of these materials to earthquake. In this case, though, we also see the usefulness of proceeding by first identifying main ideas, to which secondary ones may then be attached.

T
he main idea is ‘houses destroyed, churches not’, and then relates to the nouns their characteristics , in this case wooden and stone

What are the main ideas of a speech?
What are the main ideas of a speech?
Adverbs of time,
although not part of a subject-verb-object
analysis, tend to be of rather more importance than other adverbs.

The tense the verb
itself is of great importance.

Dealing with examples in a speech
F
irst:
The interpreter must indicate clearly that
it is an example.


Some European
countries, such as France, Spain and Portugal. have expressed….

Some European countries France, Spain and Portugal have expressed...


examples that are purely
illustrative can be edited

Examples that have intrinsic importance must be included


Examples
S
econd:
The interpreter have to decide whether
What are the main ideas of a speech?
Analysis of links
The first key to understanding a speech is
the identification of the main ideas, the second is an analysis of the links between those ideas. The sentences are related to one another in a particular way, and it is this relationship that determines the overall meaning of a speech.

The key word here is toll,
and if the interpreter does
not know it they can hardly avoid it.

1-L
ogical consequence
EX: The import duties imposed on Korean cars are excessive and discriminatory. Therefore, they must be reduced


2- Second, there may be a logical cause.
EX: The American government has been exerting greater pressure on the Colombian authorities, because the illegal import and consumption of cocaine from that country is again on the increase.

3- I
deas may be sequentiaI following on from one another, but without logical cause or consequence. In such cases sentences may be simply juxtaposed or the ideas linked with the little word and.


4-links which oppose to ideas
The strong Mark may not be good for our exports, but ¡s has contributed to
holding down inflation.

T
he consecutive interpreter listens to a speech and then reproduces it in a different language.
T
he consecutive interpreter depends on his short-term memory to recall ideas.
M
emory means "Remembering things", remembering dates in history, names, telephone numbers, and vocabulary in foreign language.
"Remembering things" is different from the "memory" that the consecutive interpreter used to order ideas in their brain so as to be able to recall them and reproduce them in a significant way.
T
he consecutive interpreter use mnemonic techniques were the interpreter attaches notions or labels to the idea they wish to recall.

The key word here is toll,
and if the interpreter does
not know it they can hardly avoid it.

Memory
W
hat are mnemonic techniques?
Mnemonic techniques are more specific memory
aids by using an 
image
,
rhyme
,or 
figure of speech
.
F
or Example:
Napoleon, ear, door, Germany

Chaining- Create a story where each word or idea you have to remember will cue the next idea you need to recall.

Story: Napoleon had his
 ear to the door to listen to the 
Germans
There are ways to facilitate the order and stock ideas in the interpreter mind:

There are ways to facilitate the order and stock ideas in the interpreter mind:

The interpreter should concentrate on two key elements.

The
main
idea.
The
links
between
ideas
With the two keys elements and the way to order the ideas the interpreter will automatically be thinking of the speech in terms of its structure and it will be easier to recall it .

The key word here is toll,
and if the interpreter does
not know it they can hardly avoid it.

Basic rules to be followed in asking questions:
Interpreters’ role:

Re-expression
After understanding and analyzing the speech, the consecutive interpreter must move
on to re-expressing it.

What if the interpreter has still not understood everything or is not in a position to reproduce it?

T
he interpreters must ask themselves if the question is really necessary to improve the interpretation.

T
he interpreters should put their question politely to the speaker in the speaker’s own language, and not forget to thank the speaker when the information is given.
T
he question should be specific, useful, elicit an equally clear and precise answer from the speaker.


T
hey must make sure the speaker is understood by the audience.
T
hey should recognize that they are public speakers just like any other and must establish contact with the audience, speaking up clearly and articulating.
T
hey must also establish eye contact with the audience.
T
hey should avoid looking at their notes all the time, either because they are deciphering enigmatic signs taken unclearly or because they are thinking hard about the meaning of the notes.
T
he interpreter should know exactly what do they want to say in the most efficient way the moment they open their mouth. This means the consecutive should only last about two thirds to three-quarters of the time taken up by the original.

The interpreter has to begin speaking practically as soon as the speaker has made it clear that they have finished (unless the interpreter needs to ask a question) without hesitation.
The interpreter should not introduce repetition which is not in the original, but should offer to the audience a number of versions of the same sentence with more or less synonymous words and expressions.
The interpreter must speak at a sustained, steady pace, and clear for the audience.
In general terms the overall meaning of a speech may be brought out not just through the words used but also through the speaker’s intonation and use of pauses. It is important for an interpreter to use these resources.

Interpreters’ role:
I
nterpreting is a profession that is all about communication. In order to communicate well, the interpreter has to ‘make their own speech’ out of every speech they interpret. Yet they also have to be accurate and faithful to the speaker.( using their own words while respecting the content of the original)
T
hey can replace a verbal expression
T
he interpreter can re-express freely
T
he interpreter keeping abreast of recent developments in enriching general vocabulary and attempting to improve the style through regular reading of a broad range of well-written publications and to express ideas well, efficiently, clearly and elegantly, one must have the richest possible resources available in the target language and be able to call on them whenever needed.

Consequences of interpretation:
Analysis of links
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