ITIA Bulletin – August 2013


Ethics is a very big word whatever language it is being translated into or out of and this is an issue that crops up in a number of the pieces in this edition of the Bulletin. Just as solidarity is an immensely important element for any professional group or association likewise are the highest of standards, as declared in the ITIA Code of Ethics. The ITIA has received a number of complaints in recent times in relation to translators producing sub­standard work and then certifying it. The ITIA, like many other national professional bodies, have very clear rules and regulations in relation to who is qualified to certify a translation. Unfortunately the purchasers of translations are not always aware of this and fall victim to unscrupulous translators who purport to be certified translators.


If a member of a profession engages in unethical practices it besmirches all of us and, particularly given the efforts of the ITIA over the years to raise our profile and to achieve recognition for the profession, it is most disheartening to say the least when a member lets us all down.

Also worth a read – given the hue and outcry reflected in recent previous bulletins vis-a-vis the Court services interpreting tender – is the article from the Irish Times about the savings made due to less demand and the “contract negotiation” with the services suppliers. Despite claims of high satisfaction levels’ there is no reference as to how the quality is measured nor the method for monitoring the services supplied. Reducing interpreters’ rates, which pushes out trained professionals, and not diminishing quality is an impossibility – something that unfortunately seems to be of little interest to any of the parties involved.

Apart from that, we hope you enjoy the mix of articles and are still waiting with bated breath for your views!

Anne Larchet

Interpreter jailed for helping learner drivers cheat on their theory test

Allyson Ng, a Mandarin-language interpreter, charged £110 to help theory test candidates cheat.

A Chinese interpreter has been jailed for helping dozens of learner drivers cheat on theory tests. Allyson Ng, a Mandarin-language interpreter, was jailed for 12 months at Cardiff Crown Court today after admitting conspiring to defraud the Driving Standards Agency (DSA).

Ng charged £110 a time to interpret for candidates on the driving theory test. The DSA became suspicious when Ng’s client base expanded rapidly in the second half of 2011.

DSA fraud investigators analysed a random sample of 27 recordings of Ng’s translations and found that they were all fraudulent. Ng was cheating by using the Mandarin word for “yes” before the correct answer on the multiple choice questions.

Ng was arrested at the Cardiff Theory Test Centre, on Churchill Way, on October 18, 2012. She pleaded guilty to the 27 fraudulent translations at a hearing on June 14, and asked for another 40 offences to be taken into account. Between 2009 and 2012 Ng interpreted on a total of 123 theory tests. The DSA last night said it was in the process of revoking 94 theory test pass certificates.

Any driving licences that have been obtained as a result of the fraudulent theory tests will also be revoked.

The DSA’s head of fraud and integrity, Andy Rice, said: “The driving test is there to ensure that all drivers have the skills and knowledge to use the roads safely and responsibly. Anyone who tries to circumvent this process is putting innocent road-users at risk. This sentence sends a clear message that driving test fraud is a serious offence and will be dealt with accordingly.”

“We have stringent measures in place to detect fraudulent activity and work closely with the police to bring all offenders to justice.”

Learners whose first language isn’t English can use an interpreter on both the theory and practical driving tests. However, earlier this year the UK Government launched a consultation on proposals to withdraw foreign language support for driving test candidates. This was in response to concerns about potential road safety implications and the risk of fraud.

Announcing the consultation, Road Safety Minister Stephen Hammond said: “We want to ensure that all drivers have the right skills to use our roads safely and responsibly. We also want to keep test fees to a minimum for candidates, and I am not convinced that providing translations is the most effective use of resources.”

The Government’s response to the consultation is expected in the autumn.

Peter Law
Original source:

Cost of Court Interpreters in Ireland Down 57% Since 2008

Reduction in demand and savings from contract negotiations behind the fall Courts service says the most frequently translated language between 2008 and 2012 was Polish followed by Lithuanian and Romanian respectively.

The annual cost of providing interpreters for court cases has dropped 57 per cent since the start of 2008.

The Courts Interpreters Service provides translators to non-fluent speakers who are involved in legal proceedings conducted in Irish or English.

In 2012 the annual cost of providing these translators was €1.56 million, down from €3.6 million five years earlier.

According to the Courts Service the fall in costs is due to a drop in demand for interpretation services coupled with savings achieved through contract negotiations with companies providing the service.

“Costs for the past number of years reflect the increases and decreases of the need for interpretation and the achievement of value for money,” a spokesperson from the Courts Service said.

Polish was the most frequently translated language between 2008 and 2012 followed by Lithuanian and Romanian respectively.

The Courts Service said approximately 25 per cent of all interpretation services were for Polish while Lithuanian and Romanian account for between 15 and 20 per cent.

Russian and Mandarin were the fourth and fifth most frequently used languages.

In spite of the year on year drop in costs a spokesperson for the Courts Service said that there has been a “very high satisfaction level with the quality of services”.

“The vast majority of occasions in which an interpreter is used pose no issue or problems,” he said. “Where an issue of a lack of clarity or understanding arises, the dynamic of the court setting makes this apparent”.

“On these rare occasions the interpreter can be replaced”.

Over the past 16 years the service has been provided in up to 210 different languages and dialects.

Three companies provide the majority of interpretation services:, Context and Lionbridge.

Christopher McKinley
Original source:
Reproduced with permission from The Irish Times

Lost in translation

An Irishman’s Diary: A wren in the wrong place

Further to the question of whether a certain plant should be called “furze” or “whin” (An Irishman’s Diary August 15th), Ted O’Brien writes with an amusing but true story. It concerns the famous Fermanagh porcelain company, Belleek Pottery, which over the years has occasionally produced limited-edition plates on certain themes.
Back in the 1977, for example, the firm decided to commission a Christmas plate, the motif for which was taken from that well-known traditional song – connected with the martyrdom of St Stephen – The Wren in the Furze.

Unfortunately, the die for the plate had to be cast in England, where the Feast of St Stephen is called Boxing Day and the custom of hunting the wren unknown. It may be assumed, also – this being 1977 – that directions for the plate were given over the phone.

In any case, the die came back depicting the bird among the branches of what looked like a coniferous tree, with a cone attached to one of the twigs. Sure enough, the obverse of the plate declared this to be “The Wren in the Firs”.

But nobody noticed the mistake (perhaps because Fermanagh is a whin-speaking area) and production went ahead. So now, as Ted says, “there are limited editions out there somewhere which, like faulty postage stamps, must have considerably increased in value.”

They are indeed out there, turning up on eBay and antique auction sites from time to time. But here’s the thing. On any sites I have seen, the “Wren in the Firs” plates are offered only as objects of beauty and of a certain vintage.

That’s to say that, in Britain and America, where most such purchases are made, they still appear not to have noticed the error. Or maybe they have and just don’t care. And I’m not sure why – it’s my post-colonial hangover, no doubt – but I find this slightly annoying.

It’s as if our mistakes are not important enough to add value at auction. So, in the circumstances, I have decided to take perverse, retrospective satisfaction from an e­mail I received some years ago about Irish signage.

I can’t remember whether it was from a man or woman. But it must have been a first-time visitor to Ireland, or somebody remembering a time when s/he had first visited, and had never before encountered Irish-language signs for toilets.

…my correspondent had decided that, being anagrams, “mna”and “man” meant the same thing.

Relying instead on anglophone logic, my correspondent had decided that, being anagrams, “mna” and “man” meant the same thing. And either the visitor was a male who blundered into the “mna’s”, or a female who – by reductive reasoning – did the opposite.

This in turn reminds me that, up until the 1990s, Britain still had a female branch of the navy: the Women’s Royal Naval Service, aka the “Wrens”. It’s an idle thought, but I wonder whether, visiting Ireland, a startled Wren ever

found herself “in the Fir’s”. If so, such a scene would almost be worth a commemorative plate (with porcelain by Armitage Shanks).

Thanks to several other readers, while I’m at it, for further enlightening me on the whin/furze dichotomy. I now know (courtesy of Deirdre Cantwell) that the poet Francis Ledwidge was indeed a whin-man. Despite living only a few miles north of Yellow Furze, he wrote at least twice about “whin-clad” hills, as AT Lucas’s map would imply he should. I don’t know, still, why Irish news reports always refer to “gorse fires”, even though, as Lucas wrote, nobody here calls the plant by that name. Maybe it only becomes gorse when it’s burning. But against that, I’m assured by Colm Donoghue, that in south Wicklow, they used to make bonfires of the shrub every May 1st, in which role it became the “Maybush”.

A couple of readers have also drawn my attention to another traditional tune called Whiny Hills of Leitrim. Which I assume to be a spelling mistake, although even in the Comhaltas archive, that’s how it’s written. I suspect, somehow, that the hills in question were merely whinny. And if they weren’t, they probably had their reasons for complaining.

But to show that translation problems are not confined to Irish and English, I’ll leave the last word with Declan Bonner. Who, years ago, visited a Dublin garden centre, seeking advice on a plant suitable for “my new exposed seaside site in west Donegal”. The garden centre prescribed something called Ulex europaeus. So he filled his car-boot and took them home. Where, as he puts it, “They turned out to be the whin bushes I was trying to eradicate from my field at the time.”

Frank McNally
Original source:
Reproduced with permission from The Irish Times.

When being lost in translation kills

Several preventable deaths in California show the dire need for legislation on medical interpreters

Maria Guevara had been trying to get pregnant for three years when she saw a doctor at Los Angeles County General hospital in 2008. She was understandably thrilled, then, to learn she was indeed three months pregnant at the time of her visit. As Guevara later recalled, when the doctor asked her in English if she wanted to keep the baby, “without hesitation I replied ‘yes’ to his question. Before leaving the hospital, the doctor prescribed me medication that I thought was prenatal care. That lack of communication between the doctor and me has changed my life forever.”

Guevara took the prescribed medication, and experienced violent pain and bleeding. She returned to the hospital, where another doctor told her the bleeding was the result of a miscarriage.

That lack of communication between the doctor and me has changed my life forever.

“My baby was dead. The medication the initial doctor prescribed to me was not prenatal care but medication to induce an abortion,” she told a press conference in April at the University of California Davis Medical Center in Sacramento. “Not speaking any English, I was unable to understand his question to me. He did not speak Spanish and no interpreter was provided.” This occurred at the largest single health care provider for a county where 37 percent of the population is comprised of Spanish- speakers. “Losing my baby forced me into a deep depression,” Guevara said. “I could not bear looking at or holding babies because the thought brought back painful emotions.”

Although California has some of the strongest laws in the nation spelling out a patient’s right to an interpreter, stories like Guevara’s are far from unique. Day after day, non-English speaking patients are seeing doctors and nurses throughout California without the aid of medical interpreters, sometimes with tragic results, a Frying Pan News investigation has found. Hardly a day goes by when Julio Perez doesn’t think about his joyful little brother Aldo, an energetic five-year-old who loved watching cartoons – and how Aldo might be alive today if his parents had been able to communicate with doctors.

California is the most ethnically diverse state in the nation, and an estimated 40% of the population speaks a language other than English at home.

Both brothers got sick one day in March 2008, and their mother first took them to a clinic with a Spanish­ speaking doctor in South Gate, about seven miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles. Each of the boys was given a shot. Julio got better; Aldo did not. Their mother took Aldo back to the clinic, then to two hospitals. At the second hospital, Long Beach Memorial Medical Center, which had more sophisticated medical care available, an interpreter was summoned to explain the liability forms. Once the forms were signed, Julio recalls, the interpreter left and never returned.

None of the doctors or nurses the family dealt with at LBMMC spoke fluent Spanish. “I had to be the interpreter,” Julio says. As he remembers, doctors said that his brother had a serious bacterial infection.

Numerous medical procedures followed, as doctors tried to save Aldo’s life. He died on April 14, 2008. “I feel that my baby brother’s death was an injustice,” says Julio Perez, now 24. He believes the hospital kept his family in the dark about Aldo’s condition. “If we had proper interpreting services … my parents could have asked questions.”

California Assemblyman Dr. Richard Pan (D- Sacramento), a pediatrician and chairman of the Assembly’s Health Committee, says that Maria Guevara’s story, which he heard firsthand in April, epitomizes the need for an effective statewide system of medical interpreters. “That story tells you the horrendous consequences of not being able to communicate between a patient and a health care provider,” he says in an interview.

Such problems are systemic and widespread. In a month-long investigation, Frying Pan News has reviewed 75 case studies from across California in which a qualified medical interpreter was not present. In all of the cases, the health professionals were fluent only in English; the patients spoke a variety of languages, including Spanish, Russian, Mandarin, Cantonese, Samoan, Vietnamese, Khmer and Hmong.

California is the most ethnically diverse state in the nation, and an estimated 40% of the population speaks a language other than English at home. The need for qualified medical interpreters, moreover, is expected to increase when millions of people who don’t speak English become eligible for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. Experts stress that many of those newly enrolled won’t be able to communicate with their doctors and other health professionals unless interpreters are readily available.

“The Affordable Care Act will exacerbate this issue,” says Dr. George Flores, program manager for prevention at the California Endowment, a Los Angeles-based private statewide health foundation that works to expand quality health care for underserved individuals and communities in California. “A good portion of those eligible speak a language other than English. This will put more pressure on a system already bereft of language capability.”

State Assemblyman Philip Y. Ting (D-San Francisco), who held a forum on language access last week, agrees. “This issue will become even more critical in the coming years,” says Ting, “as three million new patients who speak only limited English enter the health system .”

To address the problem, Assembly Speaker John A.

Perez (D-Los Angeles) has authored a bill, AB 1263, that would significantly expand trained medical interpreters. The measure was passed by the Assembly in May and is expected to be voted on by the state Senate soon. If it passes the Senate, it would likely land on Governor Jerry Brown’s desk in September.

The bill would require the state Department of Health Care Services to seek federal matching funds to create a state-certified interpreter system. Under the bill, California would spend $200,000 to gain access to $270 million in federal funds authorized under the Affordable Care Act to fund interpreter services. It would create about 7,000 interpreter jobs over a 10-year period.

“For a relatively small investment of state dollars, we will be able to tap into federal dollars,” says Dr. Pan. “AB 1263 will ensure that all Californians are able to obtain quality care by ensuring good communication between patients and their health care professionals.”

Opposition to the bill is coming from the Virginia-based National Right to Work Committee, according to a legislative fact sheet distributed by Speaker Perez’s office. The National Right to Work Committee, a conservative nonprofit that fights trade unionism, did not respond to queries for this article.

In the absence of available interpreters, many people now use their children, other family members or friends to interpret for them. But physicians, government officials and other experts say this is almost always a bad idea.

“Children do not have the maturity to understand the importance and seriousness of medical discussions,” says Dr. Flores of the California Endowment. “There could be misunderstandings that could lead to very serious problems. Imagine a boy interpreting for a mother having menstrual problems. Parents might withhold information and think they were protecting the child, but this would hurt the medical encounter. It’s never appropriate to depend on a child to interpret.”

In the absence of available interpreters, many people now use their children, other family members or friends to interpret for them.

When things go wrong, the child interpreters are often left with lifelong scars. Poulinna Po was 15 when she was often pressed into service as an interpreter for her Cambodian father, who spoke Khmer. The elder Po had diabetes and could not understand how to take his medicine. He was reluctant to see doctors or go to the hospital because he felt there was no one who could help him. Poulinna Po could understand what the doctor was saying, but she did not know words in her native tongue to convey the medical information back to her father.

Po’s father ultimately died from a brain tumour and complications from a stroke. Now 17, Poulinna Po blames herself for her father’s death. She tearfully told her story last June at a town hall meeting on language access held at the University of Southern California.

As the Affordable Care Act’s full implementation proceeds, the need for medical interpreters will increase – and so will problems unless the system is fixed. Julio

Perez now lives in Norwalk and graduated this spring from California State University, Fullerton with a degree in political science and Chicano Studies. He says he is speaking out to shine a spotlight on the problems caused by the lack of medical interpreters and the need for a solution. He has also testified before the state Assembly Health Committee.

“I’m putting so much effort into this because my little brother passed away and I do not want his suffering to be in vain,” Perez says. “I want people to see that the lack of medical interpreters has had detrimental effects on families and that innocent lives have been lost as well. If the governor signs AB1263, then I will feel that I accomplished what I was hoping for, and saved some lives in the process.”

Gary Cohn is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who has worked for the Los Angeles Times, Baltimore Sun and Philadelphia Inquirer. Reach him with comments or story ideas at [email protected].
Gary Cohn
Original source:
Reproduced with permission from the author.

Tearmafocht don Aontas Eorpach

A review of a wide-ranging bilingual (Irish/English) study of the history and present state of Irish-language terminology for use in EU institutions in the context of the 12 newer (2004­2007) member -state languages.

Tearmawcht don Aontas Eorpach : TaitM na hEireann – Tionscadal GaIATE: UNA BHREATHNACH, FIONNUALA CLOKE, CAOILFHIONN NIC PHAIDIN; Clo Iar-Chonnacht, Indreabhan (ar son Fiontar, Ollscoil Chathair Bhaile Atha Cliath) 2013: lgh 220; €12.

O rinneadh teanga de chuid an Aontais Eorpaigh den Ghaeilge sa bhliain 2007 ta eileamh leanunach ar thearmaf le freastal ar riachtanais an aistriuchain Ghaeilge in institiuidf an Aontais, go mor mor sna tri institiuid is mo ata gmomhach in obair aistriuchain agus tearmeolafochta, mar ata an Chomhairle, an Coimisiun agus an Pharlaimint. I lathair na huaire ta 27 mballstat agus 23 theanga oifigiula san Aontas, agus m mor an reachtafocht ar fad agus doicimeid thabhachtacha eile a aistriu go gach ceann de na 23 theanga sin. Tugtar go neamhfhoirmiuil ‘seanteangacha’ ar na cinn ar glacadh leo ina dteangacha oifigiula anuas go dtf 1995, agus teangacha ‘nua’ ar na cinn ar glacadh leo in 2004 agus 2007. Seachas an Ghaeilge, is iad na teangacha ‘nua’ sin, an Bhulgairis (2007), an Eastoinis, an Laitvis, an Liotuainis, an Mhaltais, an Pholainnis, an Romainis (2007), an tSeicis, an tSlovaicis, an tSloiveinis, agus an Ungairis. (Faoin am a leifear an meid seo, beidh an Chroitis ar na teangacha oifigiula ‘nua’ fosta, ach m bhaineann sin leis an sceal go foill.)

Is eard ata san fhoilseachan snasta datheangach seo (121 lch Gaeilge agus 119 lch Bearla) staidear cuimsitheach ar an bhfreagairt a tugadh o 2007 i leith ar na riachtanais tearmafochta Gaeilge i gcomortas leis na dteangacha ‘nua’ eile agus i gcomhtheacs fheidhmeanna institiuidf an Aontais. Is leir nach ionann cas na tearmafochta sa ghrupa ‘nua’ agus sa seanghrupa. Is mo a bhfonn na teangacha nua gafa le tearmaf a aimsiu agus a bhailiu no a chruthu agus a sholathar don mhorbhunachar sonraf IATE (Inter-Active Terminology for Europe; Ga an nod don Ghaeilge) mar ais aistriuchain, an ait a mbfonn na seanteangacha dfrithe cuid mhaith ar an mbunachar a bhainistiu agus a uasdatu no a nuashonru go corasach.

Ar chuinsf staire agus eile, ta bearnaf i gcuid de na teangacha nua in abhair airithe (‘cailliuint reimsf, dar leis na tearmeolaithe Gaeilge). Aithmtear, mar shampla, easpa tearmaf airgeadais agus bainceireachta i roinnt acu mar gur i mBearla is mo a phleM an obair sin go dtf a bhfuil le deanaL Mar an gceanna le reimsf airithe eolafochta, mar gur i mBearla is mo a fhoilsfonn saineolaithe a saothar. Ta an Mhaltais, mar shampla, gann i dtearmaf innealtoireachta agus airgeadais i ngeall ar cheannas an Bhearla sna reimsf sin roimhe seo; tathar gann i dtearmaf iarnroid go sonrach cionn is nach bhfuil traenacha ar bith i Malta. Nfl tearmaf flonoireachta fluirseach ag Polannaigh, na tracht ar an iascach domhainfharraige coitianta ag Slovacaigh. N taise don Ghaeilge i dtaca le reimsf airithe ach oiread, ach ar a laghad ta na hacmhainm ann le deileail leis an bhfadhb, rud nach flor i gconaf i gcas teangacha nua eile. Ar an iomlan, dealrafonn se go bhfuil ag Ghaeilge ag cruthu go maith i measc theangacha an ghrupa ‘nua’, ainneoin dushlain agus deacrachtai

Ar na deacrachtaf a bhaineas leis an tearmafocht go ginearalta ta fadhbanna teanga, idir litriu agus ghramadach, agus fadhbanna traslitrithe.(An aibftir Romhanach ata i dtreis sna teangacha oifigiula go leir faoi lathair, taobh amuigh den Ghreigis agus den Bhulgairis.) Ta bonn maith faoi chursaf teanga na Gaeilge ar an iomlan, ach bfonn neamhreir anseo is ansiud fos a chruthafonn eiginnteacht airithe d’aistritheoiri agus do thearmeolaithe — nuair a bhfonn sraith d’ainmfhocail eiginnte i ndiaidh a cheile sa tuiseal ginideach, cuiream i gcas. Bfonn ar GaIATE feachaint i gc6na^ ar chaiHocht agus eifeacht na dtearma^ agus deileail le cinn sna bunachair a bheadh lochtach no dmholta no dubailte no i leig. Agus ta na sean-naimhde sin, bru ama agus easpa foirne, ann i gconai

Ta cuntas suimiuil ann ar na ceimeanna eagsula i sreabhadh na hoibre idir lucht tearmafochta na mballstat agus institiuidf an Aontais, agus idir na forais eagsula sna ballstait fein. I gcas na Gaeilge, ta obair na tearma^ochta roinnte ar thri dhream, mar ata Foras na Gaeilge, an Coiste Tearmafochta, agus Fiontar in Ollscoil Chathair Bhaile Atha Cliath. Fiontar a dheanas curam den smomh idirl^n, a bhfuil os cionn 163,300 tearma Gaeilge ann faoi lathair, agus 160,630 tearma Bearla, moide 6000 eigin tearma i dteangacha eile.

Ta se le leamh ar an saothar seo go bhfuil taighde fairsing agus comhoibriu ar siul ag an bpobal tearma^ochta idirnaisiunta. Is eolas agus forleargas ann ar stair, foinsf, modheola^ocht, leagan amach agus bainistfocht na tearmafochta a bhaineas le teangacha ‘nua’ an Aontais go hairithe (bfodh nach nd^r^tear ach ar phointf airithe sa leirmheas gairid seo.) Ta neart tabla^ agus learaid^ ag gabhail leis an teacs, mar aon le hinneacsanna, gluais, agus aguisfrn eile. (On mBearla, de reir rialach, a rinneadh an leagan Gaeilge, rud is leir i gcupla ait mar a dtosafonn liosta teangacha leis an tSeicis, mar go mb^onn ‘Czech’ i dtus an liosta Bearla, rud a fhagas nach mbfonn an liosta Gaeilge in ord aibftre.)

Ta dul chun cinn mor deanta i gcUrsa^ tearmafochta o tionscna^odh GaIATE agus is feidir bheith ag suil le tuilleadh forbartha san am ata romhainn, agus ballstait nua ag iarraidh ceangal leis an Aontas an t-am ar fad.

Maire Nic Mhaolain

Whats’ Hot, What’s Not

What’s hot…

On the international front interpreters played a key role in breaking barriers and providing a vital bridge over the multilingual gap during Exercise Endeavour Africa, a scenario-driven communications exercise in Lusaka, Zambia earlier this month, and staying in the international arena ..

…Whats’ Not

The attempted kidnap of a Swedish opposition politician who was giving a speech at the University of Somalia ended in her being wounded and her interpreter being killed.

Joining the ITIA

The Irish Translators’ & Interpreters’ Association is pleased to welcome new members to the association. We currently have the following categories of membership:

  • Professional
  • Associate
  • Corporate
  • Institutional
  • Student
  • Honorary

Professional Membership is awarded to translators or interpreters who meet the strict criteria of the ITIA based on qualification and level of experience.

Applicants must also achieve a PASS in the annual Professional Membership Examination (translator or interpreter) set by the ITIA.

Associate Membership is available to translators and interpreters who are starting out on their careers and to those who do not work full-time as a translator or interpreter. Many members avail of Associate Membership until such time as they have acquired the requisite experience and/or qualifications to apply for Professional Membership. Associate Membership is also availed of by people with a professional interest in the professions of translation and interpreting (e.g. terminologists, translation/interpreting tutors etc.) and by those who have a general interest in these professions.

Corporate Membership is available to translation companies. As this category is currently under review, we are not accepting applications at the moment.

Institutional Membership is available to bodies that do not function as commercial agencies, for example university centres for translation and interpreting studies or cultural institutes. Application documents for Institutional membership are currently being prepared.

Student Membership is available to persons undertaking undergraduate studies in any discipline or those undertaking postgraduate studies in translation or interpreting.

Honorary Membership is awarded by the ITIA AGM to persons in Ireland or abroad who have distinguished themselves in the field of translation or interpreting.

For further details and application forms, please see our website at


“For me the most important thing a good translation does is represent the original in another language in an essential, but indefinable way… The translator takes liberties and is forced to make all kinds of difficult decisions, but in the end a good translation comes out of an evocation of the original. ’’—David Colmer

“The importance of literature in translation has a lot to do with getting to hear voices and getting voices heard. More voices. Other voices. ’’—Donal McLaughlin (author and translator)

The latest issue of The Stinging Fly magazine is dedicated to new work in translation—with 13 stories and excerpts from writers working in languages including French, German, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, Polish, Ukrainian and Greek.

Stinging Fly publisher Declan Meade and issue co-editor Nora Mahony of Parkbench Publication Services have gathered 13 works in translation, as well as a series of Q & A’s with award-winning translators and others working in the field, essays by Claire Kilroy and Susan Tomaselli, and an interview with renowned Russian translator, Robert Chandler.

The translation issue began as an idea following Declan’s visit to the Bucharest International Festival of Literature in December 2011. As Declan explains in his editorial: Not enough translation happens in Ireland— and, as a result, readers miss out. So the aim of this special issue is to do a little bit to redress that. I hope it will lead to a greater appreciation of the value of translation and of the translator’s art. And that we will in future have more work in translation, more often.

About Us

The Stinging Fly magazine was established in 1997 to seek out, publish and promote the very best new Irish and international writing. We have a particular interest in encouraging new writers, and in promoting the short story form. We publish 3 issues of The Stinging Fly per year, in February, June and October.

The Stinging Fly Press imprint was launched in May 2005 with the publication of Watermark by Sean O’Reilly. In 2007 we published Kevin Barry’s first collection of stories, There Are Little Kingdoms. The China Factory—a collection of stories by Mary Costello—was nominated for The Guardian First Book Award in 2012. We have also published a number of short story anthologies.

An annual subscription to The Stinging Fly costs €30 (overseas). A 2-year subscription is €54 (overseas) and includes a free copy of one of the imprint’s highly-acclaimed short story anthologies.

This special issue of the magazine has been supported by Dublin UNESCO City of Literature.

For further information contact Jonathan Dykes:

[email protected]

The Stinging Fly, Po Box 6016, Dublin 1

For more information, visit official Irish Translators and Interpreters Association website.

You can subscribe for free to ITIA Bulletin and receive a monthly pdf copy: simply send a blank email to [email protected]

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