Volume 34, Issue 3
  • ISSN 0924-1884
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9986
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Indirect interpreting, known by practitioners as ‘relay’, takes place in contexts where interpreting between two languages is carried out by means of a third, pivot language, thus creating a communicative chain between two interpreters: the one rendering an original speech into a pivot language, and the other rendering the first’s version into a different target language. Relay is used in many multilingual settings to ensure that all interlocutors can use their mother tongue, and the European Union institutions are a prominent example of such settings. Indirect interpreting is thus a reality that many professionals deal with on a daily basis. Despite this, it has not been the subject of much research as yet. This article explores the connections between indirect interpreting and the construct of quality in the ears of the interpreters who regularly give and take relay. The research first involved a focus group comprising six European Union-accredited conference interpreters with Spanish as their mother tongue. A focus group discussion aimed to identify salient issues in the giving and taking of relay across different contexts and meeting formats. The itemised concepts emerging from the discussion were then used to devise a questionnaire to gain further insight into interpreters’ concerns and ideas regarding quality indicators in indirect interpreting. Thirty professionals responded to the questionnaire. The results are analysed with a focus on the lessons that may be insightful for Translation and Interpreting Studies.


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