The Significance of Consecutive Interpreting in a Globalised World

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  • Author Charlene Lacandazo
  • Published July 3, 2013
  • Word count 426

Consecutive interpreter waits until a complete statement has been spoken and then he or she begins interpreting. Actually, over the years, consecutive interpreting has tended to be replaced by simultaneous interpreting, however, it still remains important in certain events or situations that involve two or more people that do not speak the same language.

Many linguists believe that consecutive interpreting doesn’t require a lot of planning for the interpreter to be able to render foreign messages into the target language. However, it doesn’t mean that consecutive interpreters are not required to be professional and knowledgeable in interpreting a language and subject matter during the communication.

Interpretation services are needed during cross-cultural communication when two people do not share a common language. Interpreters help speakers to understand and communicate with their audience, by bridging the gap between languages. It is important to know that the main goal of interpretation is that a message will have the same impact on the target audience that a speaker intends for his or her audience in the original language. As we all know, communication involves facial expressions, tone, form and context, and thus, a professional interpreter can definitely understand the whole meaning of the verbal language, and thus, he or she can render it effectively into the target language.

Many linguists believe that consecutive interpreting has been in use since ancient times. Today, as the world is experiencing globalisation, the demands for consecutive interpreting has massively increased. International businesses and foreign delegations that are aiming to communication to foreign audiences have a need to utilize consecutive interpreting services to secure the communication accuracy and to battle difficulties in understanding the culture and language of certain communities.

As the process of consecutive interpreting is performed when the speaker has stopped producing the original message, the interpreter begins the interpretation of a complete message. During the entire period of rendering the original language, the consecutive interpreter is allowed to take down notes in order to further understand and remember important details from the original language that are necessary to render the message into the target language.

In addition, some interpreters may believe that consecutive interpreting is easier than simultaneous interpreting due to the reason that interpreters are allowed to take notes and listen to the entire message of the original language before interpreting the message into the target language. On the other hand, consecutive interpreting requires having a skillful and capable memory that can immediately absorb, keep and understand a message to be able to interpret the meaning properly and efficiently.

Charlene Lacandazo works for Rosetta Translation, an interpreting agency in London. The company specialises in consecutive interpreting.

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