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relatedto the gr:,,:{ilaror for this may be pureiymechanical, The reasons lexis of different languages;they may also be due

to different terms of becomeinChangesto the way ideasare expressed cultural reference. and,just as important,as one changes language, eluctableas one changes culture. language ideas the speaker's is in a positionto express The more the interpreter befween in their own words,the betterwill be the qualiryof communication being merelya mediumfor that theinterpreter and the audience, the speaker paladoxaboutthe interpreter: This is surelythe greatest communication. are faithful to the text; the they the more the interpreter, the more creative - , the lessobtrusivc communication more original they arc-- enhancing interprcters mostcreative Thebest. in a meeting! theyareto thepanit'il)ilt)ts by theirdelegates. arethe onesleasltroticcd your own, aswe said,youmusthavegrasped in ordcrto rlltkc a speech But to be conveyed. theideas andanalyzed lllly understood it intellectually. battle. thisis only hall'tlrc target-language ()vcrstate ofthe interpreter's the importance One canliol are nevercompletelylearnedandthey languages skills. Justas lhcir passive must continueto work on their continueto wttrk on them, Sothe interpreter is their mother tongue.This evenif the targetianguage target languagc(s), in of recentdevelopments orderto copewith modern meanskecpingabreaSt vocabulary enrichingyoul general terminology.llut it alsomeansconstantly of a broad reading regular through and attempting to improve your style This is an activity, asweii asfollowing range of wcll-written publications. iiving abroad, your own press,which is particularly importantfor interpreters perhaps in no rcgular contact with any member of their own language and whosemothertongue activities, communityoutsidctheir professional To express or impoverished. stilted risk becoming of therefore runs the onemusthavethe richest ideasweii, that is, efficiently,clearlyandelegantly, and be able to call on target language availablein the possibleresources themwheneverneeded.

Interpreting in Consecutive 3. Note-taking


t t y'./ /,:',r'r,',. lJ n ( (t\ ottt ". dffi."tt'/ thattheabovediscussion may be annoyed of readers A number out to a largeextentas ifnotes hasbeencarried principles ofconsecutive was thatthe interpreter theimpression rlid not exist.Onemay havegleaned of up to five minuteswithoutanYreal speeches anclnremorize to anaiyze interpreters that nonebut exceptional from notcs.lt is obvlous rssistance chapprevious in the u'a1,: ourpresentatiOn to work itt tlutt cirnbeexpected in the rightperspective' to prlttl()1c-laking tcr wasmereiydesigned work is done in the ilttcrpreter's part of a consccutivc Tfre essential ifthese re-expression. alralysis, understanding. described: already actrvities you a good make the bestnotesin thewgrl<llvill not arcnot donecorrectly, thc work doneon the interpreter. Notesareno morethanan aid to enhance bu1 in themselves, an end not ale They threekey components. basis of these R. / ot-;s, ( r't,vf /J t )ut'( a lreansto an end. too muchin their notesis runninga twofold who invests The interpreter in a form as closeas posrisk. First,by trying to noteasmuchas possibie a mere sible to the originai, their notesmay becomea form of shorthand, will notes Such the speaker. by words used of transcription of the sequence their and the speech, when they are reproducing the interpreter influence of the original,not a re-expresslon vcrsionwill be too much a transliteration of its ideas. who relies too much on the interpreter Second, and more seriously, genuineunderstanding to attention their noteswill havepaid insufficient capabieof They are therefore while iisteningto the speech. and anaiysis themerrors,even of contradicting of making serious being superficial, whole but a a coherent for them is no longer insofaras the speech sclves, They are, so to speak, automaticaily. to be reproduced seriesof sentences l)yingblind. thesewarningnotesaboutthe attitudeto taketo notes, Having sounded of taking what then is the purpose and the risks involved in their abuse, notes? The first and most obvioususeof notesis to relievememory'However and order its ideaswith a view to a speech well the interpreter may anaiyze in 'memory'),therewill stiil be too many elements tlreirrecall(interpreter's particuis to recall everything.This a five-minutespeechfor an interpreter listsand so on, sincesuch narnes, contains numbers, larly trueif a speech clements cannotbe recalledon thebasisof analysisand logic. Further,if the

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chemicals, this may dlstracttnemirom ile key us^K .,r ils.erurrg iirir-ri,i,;;. to what comesnexr. By noting things in such a way rhurth.t?;;* *i"; andhow they fit into the speech, theinterpreter neednot burdentheirmemory with suchinformation;they cancontinueto devote their mentai faculties to Iistening activeryto theresrof thespeech. Bearin mina thaian interpret_ er is rarely ca'ed upoll to-interpret one speech:if you are working -;:ust intensively in consecutive for a r"r.r* ofthreehoursit is cruciar to reduce fatigueby relievingyourmemorythrough notes. The second purposeof notesis whaiwe shourd ca, ,jogging, rheinter_ preter's memory. The term 'relieving' memory was usedto cover noting down specific elements-so the interp-reter can reproduce the content of a speech'But notes can arsobe usedio enhance ,rr. in,.1pr"r"r,s ability to reproducethestructureof a speech. Notesshourd therefore reflect the form of a s.peech, making it crearto the interpreter what is importantand what is ancillary,how ideasare reratedor separated from one another.This struc_ tureshourdarsobe in the interpreter's mind; it shourd u"rr* p."orct oftheir analyticalwork. pinning the strucrure dov

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discipline, forcing theinterpreter to maketheanarysis. s;;;;;;irh. rr*"tureis already on the page, whenit comes to reproducing the speech the w.tten structure can .jog' the interpret"r,, *r_ory, _"ii"g it .rsi., to vcrbalize thedesired structure. Prsctical Points for Note-taking

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[Jnder're-expression' abovewe stressed theneedfor the interpreter to comnrunicate, which involvesthe appropriate body-language and eye-contact with delegates. Therefore,the interpretercannotafford to have notesthatthey haveto decipheras they go along.The meaningthe interpreter wishes to express shouldleapup at themfrom thepage.This meansthe interpreter shouldwrite in largecharacters. Further,notesshould be well spreadout over thepageso thatthe variouselements canbe clearlydifferentrated. The combinationof thesetwo points meansthat interpretersfind themselves gettingthrougha lot ofpapeqperhaps notingjust onesentence on a pageof the note-pad:they should have no qualmsabout this. Note also that the interpreter's notesmustbe totally unequivocal. For example,lnd cannotbe usedas an abbreviationon the one hand for industrial and elsewherefor independentsuch ambiguitywill at bestmakefor a lessefficientreadingof notes,and at worst lead to silly mistakes.If an interpreterwishes to use symbols or abbreviations, they should not succumbto the ternptationof inventing them in the courseof a speechin a way which does not make immediateand glaringsense. If a new symbolis used,it shouldbe so obvious as to be unproblematic. What to Note The things to be nored are quite logically related ro the analysisof the speech,as describedin the relevantsectionabove.The first things to be notedshouldthus be the main ideas.one could arguethat because theseare the main ideasthey will be remembered anyway,so thereis no neednoting them. However,the notesusedfor the main ideasarenot so much there to help the interpreter remember as to providea skeleton outline ofthe speech. Proceeding on the basisof the subject-verb-object analysisdescribed above,theinterpreter will thenbe ableto find in theirnotesthesequence of ideasconstituting the speech. This shouldhelp the interpreter reproduce the speech without faltering,moving swiftly from oneideato the next without having to searchin their mind for the next idea.The noteshere are not so much a recordof eachidea in detail asa prompt to cue the interpreter as they finish one ideaand wish to startthe next one. Then,just as in the mentalanalysisof a speech one hasto identify the links and separations betweenideas,so theseIinks and separations should appearin the notes.It may weii be that the speechhas such a clear logic that the interpretercan fill in the iinks without having to note them, but most of the time the situationis not so clear,and it is absolutelycrucial to

Nrtc'taking is among other things a mechanical exercise, anda number of purely practicar indications shouid befoilowed. An inteqpreter must be able tcttuketheirnotes quickiy-and writeuponsomething convenient to hold and easy to handrc' we wouldrecommend a stenographer,s note-pad, roughry l5cmby 20cm. Loose sheets ofpaper shourd o.nnit.tyu. uuo'iaJo, asthey maybecome disordered.^For anygiven speech theinterpreter should write on only therectosideof succ.rriu,pages of the iiir"too u*t_ wardto writeonbothsides, ""r"-i"J. ,..ro_u.rro]while taking nor.r,unJif youdo, thereis therisk thatyou mightrose sightof theorderin rvhich notes were taken'It is easier just to keepflippinithe pages overaiways in the same direction. To writewith,onesrrouraiaule something reliable thatflowsquick_ ly across thepage; the bestrhingis p.ouuity stiil thegood old_fashioned Iead pencil.
It is primordial that the interpreter,s notesshould be easil

anything, the links are rather more important to note than the so-called 'main ideas'themselves. provided it hasimpressed idea, itself An important visualization or because it is clearlyon the interpreter's mind,eitherthrough perhaps form, a clear abstractidea,caneasilybe notedin a very abbreviated complains,'Ships from the evcn by one key-word. if a British delegate in the fishing-fleet havebeenfishingillegallyin Britishwaters', Spanish given possible the interpreter to note a meeting it may well be for contextof to rely on their memory for the rest.On the this as SpanishJishers!and otherhand,it may not be so easyto dealwith links suchas but, therefore, to notelinks since andso on withoutnoting them.It is thusvery advisable Wherc there shouldbe a clear separation ideas systematically. betrveen ('zerolink'), thisslrorrld alsobe clearlyshownir') notes. ' A third clcrrrsrrt thatshouldalwaysbe partof an interpreter's analysis ancl u,hich alsoappcar in thenotes, is thepointof view of a speech. should 'l'lre applyhereasto links: it is important beingexprc:sscd. samearguments to reflectpointsof'vicwin an interprctation ancl it may notalwaysbe easyto build these irr laitlrf rcrninder ully withoutsorrrc from notes. Fourth,we,lravealready ncllccl tha(delegates needto know 'what happenedwhcrr', arrdthal the tcnses When important. of vcrbs are therefore noting vcrbs,irrlclpreters curruii-ly, shorrlcl thuslake careto notethe tense and if appropriatc lhe modc, ilr parricular the conditional. Similariy,it is a goodidca1onotcnrodal influence on the vcrbs.Modalverbshavea decisive functiono{'otlrcrvcrbsanclclctemrine themeaning of a sentence. pointslrrcrrtioned All o1'thc thatfit into theintellecso far areelements tual analysisol u spcechhy the interpreter; they arethus to be notedas a policy,T'heinterpreter remember all kind of insurancc could conceivably themandthepointsof themain ideaswithoutr)otes, with the links between view reflectedin theoriginal.But the notesarethereto jog thememoryby reflectingthe structure to ensure efficiencyand completeof the speech, nessin delivery,and1oensure faithfulness to theoriginalparticularly with to links and pointsof view. respect However, therearealso elements that an interpreter cannotremember or doesnot want to makethe effort to remember, and wherenotesare used to relieve memory. The first of theseis numbers.Numbersare totally abstract,and any but the simplestnumbersbecomedifficult to retainin one's mind for five minutesor so. Oncea seriesof numbers is cited,notesbecome indispensable. Datesareto be considered in the samelight. Numbersmay particuiariyif there is a seriesof be spokenvery quickly by a speaker, numbersto be given. It is important for the interpreter to note them ail, so when an interpreterrealizesthat numbersare going to be given, or if they

hearanumber,theyshoulddropeverythingelseandnoteitimmediately.lf finishingofi'notirtg thc aboutnotingthe number, hesitates the interpreter to thenumber'thereis a seriousrisk or the introduction sentence, prevlous givesa seriesof numbers'the they wiil neverget the number'If the speaker gives priority to the problem is ciearly evenworse' But if the interpreter to jot them down and then it wili be possiblefor the interpreter rrumbers, of the previousidea'which it will be returnto ticlyingup thenote-taking to retainin theirmind' casier of a speech' extract takethc fcrllowing For example, well over haveprogressed partnels to our European Our exports to we havehadtttorcdifficultyin exporttng the lasiyear,although countrieswithweak"ercurrencies'w'holtaclsometimesdeliberately a tradeadvanin orderto achicve devalualions competttive made exports example' of theirculrencyFor tagethroughundervaluation in the by 3'2%,to$25'7million'whereas progressed to Germany amountexports of Italy export case $owth wasa marginal0'6oh'total ingto$ll.4million logicalnotion' which it is relatively a colrerent, eXpreSSeS The first Sentence casytorecali.Let'sassumethattheinterpreterhasgotasfar-asnoting saysFor example'There' the when the speaker devaluations, r:ompetitive that numbersare coming;they should stop noting should sense interpreter thepreviousSentenceinordertobesuretonotethefigurescorrectly.once tlrefiguresarenotedtheinterpretercanquicklytidyuptheendoftheprevi()ussentence'whichtheywillhaveheldlatentintheirmemorywhile on the figures' concentrating You might be ableto retainweli-known therearepropernames' Second, andfamiliarnames,butonceafewarementionedoriftheinterpreterisnot rvellacquaintedwithaname'notesareessential.Bearinmindthataproper nameinaspeechusuallyhasacertainintrinsicimportance'Moreover,proper also be geographical namesare not limited to people'snames:they may names,ornamesofcompaniesororganizations'perhapsexpressedasacronyms'Tomakemattersworse'notonlymighttheinterpreterbe-unfamiliar is written' Indeed'the rvith a name,they may haveno ideaof how the name lllrmemaybewritteninascriptunfamiiiartotheinterpreter(aChineseor neither.ofthosetwo possessing interpreter name for a European .tapanese languages,forexample)'Insuchcases,theinterpretershouldignoreorthatnotesarethereonly for them' asa meansto an rtrolrafhy, remembering and as closelyas possibiewhat cnd. They shouidnote;own phonetically

is when the speaker scenario they believe they haveheard.The worst-case andmangles it. Then thenameeither, doesn'treally know how to pronounce is no wiserthanthe speaker, Eitherthe interpreter therearerwo possibilities. in which casethey can do little morethannotedown what they haveheard, and then reproduceit to the best of their ability afterwards.Or the interwhat they were trying mistakeanddeduce pretercan identify the speaker's them and producethe it the name as suits to say,in which casethey can note correctpronunciationin tlieir interpretation. All too aspossible. Lastly,lists shouldalwaysbe notedascompietely agriculturalprooften when a speakerarrivesat a list, be it of chemicals, The interpreter they reel offthe itemsat greatspeed. ducts,fish or whatever, as shouldnote the elementsascompletelyaspossible, otherwisethey have them. This meansthey should stop noting little chanceof remembering is aboutto give a list or has everythingelse once they realize the speaker just begunone.The interpreter aswith numshouldusethesametechnique bers.If the list is given too quickly for them to note down everything,they if morethanone elementis is missing; shouldnoteclearly thatsomething has finished they missing they shouid note how many, When the speaker Thus, if a speaker whetherthey wish the list to be repeated. canthen assess Colotnbia, Peru, says at speed,'The countriesconcernedare Venezuela, misses the and and the interpreter secondand fifth Cuba', Bolivia, Panama names.thev can note:

tlrc strictminimum and rely for the reston their intellectand memory.Both of personal Note-takingis very much a question aredefensible. ;rpproaches tlste. The one thing to be avoided,we repeat,is trying to note everything activelistening dtlwn asan end in itself, to thedetrimentof the interpreter's to theoriginal. llow to Note I)iagonalLay-out that notesshouldreflectthe structureof a speechclearly We havestressed that structurein their interpretation. reproduce so asto help the interpreter lJut how is this actuallydonein practice? We have alreadysaid thatthe main ideasbasedarounda subject-verbotrjectanalysisshould be noted.To reflect this analysison the page,the quite clearlyand allocate thethreecomponents interpreter shouldseparate given sectionof notes. in any position the same them roughly ro eachof 'l"lrese from left to right of a working axis, positionswill form a diagonal pageand from top to bottom, thus:

subject
verb
object of each on onepage,the beginning A numberof ideasmay becontained onebeingclearlymarkedby themove backto the left-handsideof the page. 'f he interpreter verb and not limited to notingjust the subject, is of course object,but it is aroundthis basicstructurethat they will be able to build in (cf. above,'what to note'). in thenotesif theydesire otherdetails of an articie of faith hasbecomesomething This diagonalpresentation since Rozan's epoch-makingbook on note-taking La prise de notes en interpr,tation constcutive (1956),where it was cailed dicalage ('shift'). lJut Rozan himself gives relativeiy littie explanation as to why he rccommends it, and one may quitejustifiably ask why diagonalpresentation First, the diagonal layout There are severalreasons. preferred. shouldbe on a pagc itr n of a Sentence components torcesthe interpretelto Separate

Venezuela Peru Bolivia Cuba. question theinterpreter to puttheir correctly to thespeaker Thiswill enable aflerwarcis. giveatleast themainideas To sumup,theinterpreter's notes should of a speech with thelinksbetwcen points tenses those ideas; ofview, of verbs, andmodaiverbs, should alsobenoted; theirmemory, to reiieve theinterpretershouldnotenumbers, dates, names andlists.These arethe bare requirements of notes. Interpreters mayof course to notemuch choose more. havehighlyefficient Somecolleagues note-taking techniques thatenable themto takedownpractically everything. to writeabsolutely prefer Others