image of Is machine interpreting interpreting?



This article first considers the question whether machine translation is translation and moves on to address the analogous issue for interpreting. After a review of the development and state of the art in machine interpreting, more commonly referred to as ‘spoken language translation’ or ‘speech translation’, the question of whether machine interpreting is interpreting is discussed – first with regard to terminology and conceptual distinctions and then in broader translation-theoretical frameworks. Using Otto Kade’s early definitional proposal as a point of departure, a reconceptualization is proposed in the form of a three-dimensional model designed to go beyond rigid taxonomies. The dimensions of agency, embodiment and immediacy are used to characterize translation as a graded concept in which these features may be more or less prominent.

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