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Exploring institutional perceptions of child language brokering

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Abstract

The present paper investigates the frequent but little studied phenomenon of child language brokering (CLB), focusing specifically on reported experiences of child-brokered events by representatives of Italian healthcare institutions. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with healthcare providers and general practitioners in a medium-sized town in North-East Italy. The aim of the interviews was to highlight recurrent patterns in the commissioning of interpreting services, as well as institutional perceptions of language brokering in general (be it professional or ad hoc), and of CLB in particular. Overall, respondents, while expressing their concerns for the ethical, social and cultural implications of CLB, “defended” it as one of the main, if not the only, available resources to interface with adult migrants in the Italian context.

References

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