lunes, 26 de diciembre de 2011

Somebody is thinking —somebody is translating. Embodiment in cognitive translation research

I couldn't agree more with Sandra Halverson when, in her post of 19 October 2011, she claims that translation would benefit from adopting integrated, non-dualistic approaches. Perhaps such approaches could help us solve difficulties like those humorously depicted by Jorge Amigo (see his posts on 21 November and 6 December 2011) when confronted with the task to teach "the culture of a country" to translation students. Understanding and describing translation processes without preconceived divisions and dichotomies might be helpful in the design of syllabi for translation or interpreting training programs. This is an area where current wisdom needs to be thoroughly revised. The way translation learning is still now conceived of, as reflected in current program syllabi, might be arbitrarily dividing the acquisition and development of translator's complex skills.
In the last decades, cognitive science has challenged traditional dualistic oppositions such as those of input and output, mind and body, and subject and object. Embodied, embedded and distributed cognition is the (compound) umbrella label for various approaches that try to offer an integrated picture of human cognition. In this post, I would like to take a closer view at embodiment from different perspectives, and also to outline some possible implications of these views for translation process research. What does it mean for translation to be embodied? Let's dig it out a little bit.

martes, 6 de diciembre de 2011

Can we teach "culture" in Translation and Interpreting Studies? (2/2)


In my previous post I wrote about my first experience in teaching 'US culture' and the possibility of focusing course sessions on what Agar (1992:231) called rich points and/or what Seelye (1993:74-75) labeled culture capsules. This option, however interesting and widely used in ELF teaching, could pose some problems that I will address at the end of this post. Now I would like to focus on the second option I sketched in my first post on the issue: