Just as we have been doing for several years now, the team at Tatutrad attended the 8th Conference of the Spanish Modern Languages Society (SELM), held in November 2018 in Seville, Spain.

These annual conferences, organised by SELM, are an opportunity to share the recent advances in language-related research in the fields of translation and interpretation and teaching. Based in Seville, SELM is a non-profit association, registered in 2002, that centres on the promotion and study of modern languages within the fields of translation and teaching.

The Higher Institute of Linguistic Studies and Translation (ISTRAD) is also involved in organising this conference. This institution trains translation industry professionals through specialised masters and postgraduate courses, such as the Master’s programme in Translation and New Technologies or the Specialisation in Video Game Translation and Localization, with lectures by professors from several universities and professionals from various language-related fields.

In short, two days filled with presentations, round table discussions and talks in which attendees came together to share their ideas, experiences and research findings with translation companies, professional translators, universities and students.

Amparo Hurtado Albir, translator, scholar and professor of Translation Studies at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), opened the event. Her presentation Research on the Didactics of Translation shed light on her study into translation skills and university curricula and how they must adapt to changes in the profession and to educator development. She also highlighted the role of learning technologies in advancing research in order to improve teaching.

Javier Pérez Alarcón then gave us an insight into his experience subtitling and dubbing The Handmaid’s Tale. We saw for ourselves how the complexity of this series in terms of its terminology and wording required a professional translator accustomed to dealing with audiovisual material and researching the topic (in this case, the original novel) in order to maintain the work’s intertextuality.

Although we would have loved to have seen all the presentations, we had to choose which ones to attend on the first day. We’re now going to share some of the highlights.

We really enjoyed listening to Francesc Morellò, Operations Director at iDISC, who ran through the technological evolution up to the present day, whereby robots, artificial intelligence and machine translation are becoming increasingly important. Just as Francesc said, translation is no exception to this evolution, but rather will form part of it and we will have to keep adapting to the industry as it develops.

We then put our Tatutrad pens to the test, noting down all the advice offered by Ester Rosàs, Managing Director of Tradnologies, in a presentation with a rather enlightening title: Let’s buy time so that we don’t waste it. During her presentation, she highlighted the importance of analysing what we invest our time in and knowing our peak hours so that we can learn to manage our workload more effectively and maximise productivity.

Next up was transcreation—our favourite! Rosario de Zayas, CEO of our translation agency, together with Marián Morón (Universidad Pablo de Olavide) and Oliver Carreira (professional translator), led one of the most enthralling round table discussion of the conference, Transcreation or recreating worlds. During the discussion, they captivated a packed room with their knowledge of this mode of translation, which is currently one of the fastest-growing industry trends. Because, as we revealed in our post Do You Know What Transcreation Is?, it’s not only important to translate, but at times you need to go one step further.

Transcreatation is more than just transmitting a message. It’s adapting it to a target language and culture so that it has the same desired effect on the reader and grabs their attention, even if it means departing from the original meaning and creating new content, more effectively maintaining the same final objective in the target language. That’s why this strategy is crucial for those companies in the process of internationalizing that are looking to sell their products or services abroad.

The points raised about transcreation piqued the attendees’ curiosity, who took part in the debate asking questions and sharing their opinions on aspects such as the method for evaluating transcreation, the strategy’s suitability for medical or legal translation, and the link between the world of marketing and translation.

We are very pleased to see the interest that transcreation arouses in students and professionals, as, after all, it’s what we do at Tatutrad, our translation agency based in Seville. Until now, it’s been a relatively unknown strategy in the world of professional translation, or rather, as Rosario explained in the talk, this method of translation has always existed, but it’s only now that it has been given a name. This interest was especially evident on the second day, when we had the chance to meet a lot more of the attendees in person. If you want to find out more about the rest of our time at SELM 2018, you’ll have to wait a little longer and revisit our blog to read the next post! To be continued…