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720Translation ability of natural bilinguals

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  • Brian Mossop
    Feb 3, 2003
      I'm glad to see so many people are interested in the question I posted. As so often in Translation Studies, there is plenty of anecdotal 'evidence' (i.e. personal experience) but nothing systematic, apparently.

      It would seem that the best way to collect some actual data would be to follow Emma Wagner's suggestion: approach examiners at translation/interpretation schools or large employers and find out if they would be prepared to ask candidates some questions about their language 'biography'.

      Several people have mentioned the distinction between translation and interpretation. As Daniel Simeoni pointed out, some natural bilinguals would make bad translators simply because they received an education in only one of their languages, and as a result they do not have a mastery of the writing norms of the other language. So to pursue this line of inquiry, one would have to either restrict it to interpretation, or find out about the educational background of translators.

      Brian Mossop
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