Dear co-workers and collaborators,
A lot has been said and written about the President of the United States Donald Trump, most of the times unfriendly remarks. This is not surprising. With regard to translation, this Head of State raises a peculiar issue: how can an interpreter translate the speech of this President to another language properly? Conventions and kind words that mark the diplomatic speech do not represent major challenges, given that there are equivalent words in nearly all idioms. But what about Donald Trump? Almost no one talks like him. His speeches often deviate from the script and are fierce, a true stream of consciousness, in consecutive disorganised internal monologues and expressions of his own consciousness. In an interview to BBC, the Persian interpreter Siavash Ardalan stated that the main problem is dealing with the several void words that Trump says to gain time to formulate the next sentence. This comes alongside the many Americanisms, incomplete sentences and synonyms. Ardalan uses the following metaphor to talk about his work: ‘You have to imagine that you are working at a movie studio and attempting to translate a western into Persian.’ These are difficult times… and not just for politics.