Recent Developments in Translatology
Edited By María Amparo Jimenez Ivars and María Jesús Blasco Mayor
Directionality and Working Memory in Conference Interpreting – an Experimental Study - Jan-Hendrik Opdenhoff 161
Jan-Hendrik Opdenhoff, Universidad de Granada Directionality and Working Memory in Conference Interpreting – an Experimental Study The debate on directionality in interpreting might be as old as inter- preting itself. There have always been those who have supported the idea that the B>A direction is the “best”, the “easiest”, and the “least stress-producing,” and those who spoke up for the A>B direction as the one which meets best the expectations of high quality interpreting. The advocates of both points of view tend to base their argu- mentation on the very processes involved in interpretation: the com- prehension (analysis) process on the one hand, and the production process on the other. While most professionals in Western countries and international organizations, in order to underpin their B>A pref- erence, invoke the arguments of the Paris School (Selescovitch & Le- derer, 1989: 135), for which the focus is on production, which in their eyes is much more fluent, natural and easier in the A language, east- ern European countries followed mainly the soviet model of direc- tionality (Denissenko, 1989; Chernov, 1999; Shveitser, 1999) which focussed more on comprehension, arguing that this link is the most important one in the chain of interpreting since no good rendering of the intended sense is possible without a complete understanding of the original speech. Obviously both theories are in the right and the optimum conditions would be a clear A>A and the A>B direction, one might conclude that both directions, in spite of their...
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