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What's translation about?

As part of its celebrations for International Translation Day (ITD), ITI has been inviting its members to share what translation means to them and society as a whole.

More Than WordsThey have been invited to complete the sentence: 'Translation is more than about translating words, it's about...'

The Institute will release all the responses on ITD (30 September) and, in the meantime, here is a selection of responses. This member feedback will also feature in ITI social media posts leading up to and on ITD.

Also look out for our joint campaign with the Association of Translation Companies in support of this special day for the profession.

Translation is more than about translating words, it's about:

  • connecting minds
  • sharing information, knowledge and understanding
  • writing
  • seeing things from your point of view
  • translating the culture
  • translating intention
  • being a space shuttle with essential supplies travelling between different planets
  • getting to the hear of what the author wants to say
  • reaching out
  • mediating cultures
  • translating meaning
  • making sound local a message that's global
  • getting ideas across
  • explaining people to each other
  • replicating another person's line of thought
  • making documents that work
  • eliminating communication barriers
  • conveying the message and purpose of the original text
  • taking a fish (the text) out of water and keeping it alive in a bottle of squash (the target culture)
  • promoting understanding
  • translating meaning, not words
  • conveying brilliance and magic
  • making deals that would not otherwise be possible






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