Babel World

El blog del Departamento de Traducción y Comunicación Intercultural (TCI). A través de este blog, nuestro departamento quiere compartir contigo información, reflexiones, comentarios, trucos, sugerencias y datos de interés sobre diferentes aspectos en relación con el Grado en Traducción y Comunicación Intercultural. Te invitamos a que participes y hagas de este blog un espacio vivo y dinámico donde poder intercambiar ideas con el resto de la comunidad en la Red. Al terminar su lectura tendrás la posibilidad de publicar tu post o entry y así ampliar la información difundida.

episode 159: International Translator’s Day – needed now more than ever

Babel World Blog del Grado en Traducción y Comunicación Intercultural de la UEV Blog Published 12 November 2019

This is the title for an article that was proposed to our 2nd year Translation and Intercultural Communication Degree students in the Lengua B3 (Advanced English) course.  Three articles were chosen for this blog, which we can read below.  They were chosen for their appropriate writing style and quality of the message transmitted.  The winning writers are Malena Caballero Ferrero, Gloria Gascón Oliver and the Erasmus student Emilie Debeuckelaere.  Congratulations to you, the three winners!



International Translation Day, needed now more than ever



‘Machine translation will displace only those humans who translate like machines’ – Arle Richard Lommel.

Lately, there is a debate about how automatic translation made by computers is sooner or later going to “steal” translators’ job on the eve of a technological tornado that will make us look useless in the eyes of society.  But, do we really think that our childhood friend, Google Translate, will make language professionals disappear for good?

I bet St. Jerome, the Bible translator and Patron Saint of translators wouldn’t believe his eyes if he saw these declarations, especially since he is the reason that the International Translation Day is celebrated every September 30. This day is meant to pay tribute to all translators who add their grain of sand by making this world a bit more interconnected between cultures.

Even though some people may make you feel useless after they’ve told you how easy it is to translate something just by knowing a little bit of English, let me tell you how wrong they are; professional translators are not only fluent in a foreign language, but also manage to communicate a concept accurately from a source text into a target text.  

Furthermore, translation is essential for the spread of cultures and ideas, for instance, without translators, literature or philosophical insights wouldn’t exist in other cultures today. Regarding the worldwide economy, with translators in the equation, language is no longer a barrier; in this particular field there is a high demand for translators as effective communication is needed when it comes to business.  

This is only a small example of why we, translators, and our work is so significant. That’s why we need to promote such a wonderful day like September 30 so we can remind people that, as someone once said, machines make words and translators - language.


Malena Caballero Ferrero (2º TCI)



You want to read that book that’s hitting all the bookstores but you can’t because it’s in another language. You want to see the TV series that everybody talks about but you can’t because it’s in another language. You have bought the brand new iPhone but you can’t turn it on because you don’t understand the instruction manual because it’s in another language. I have the solution to all your problems. Who am I? I’m a translator!

Currently, thanks to the media, Internet, social networks… all the world is connected. Many of the discoveries that have changed history have occurred in different geographical places and thanks to translators we are informed not only about discoveries but facts that have marked the passage of human beings throughout history.  There is no clearer example than the fundamental role of the interpreter in the Nuremberg Trials.

Translation is so remarkably important that it has its own International Day, September 30th, in honor of St. Jerome, the first bible translator and Patron Saint of translators. It’s a day in which one must pay homage to the marvel of transferring from one language to another literary, scientific, and technical works, subtitled films, short films, international press conferences…, “writers make national literature and translators make universal literature”, said the illustrious Nobel Prize for Literature José Saramago.

So, we can’t deny that translation only brings advantages to our lives: it solves basic problems, allow us to access knowledge or works that would, otherwise, remain unknown to us. The translator deserves recognition, bearing in mind that it’s a profession which requires rigorous preparation and discipline but at the same time is extremely gratifying.


Gloria Gascón (2º TCI)



It is often said that the world is like a village. With a few clicks we can connect with anyone or travel anywhere on this planet. Sounds great, doesn't it?

Well, in that village, of course, there has to be communication and often also about important matters. Language barriers are a major obstacle. A single misunderstanding can have enormous consequences and we need professionals who can lend a helping hand.

In this respect, climate change or the Brexit are examples of important issues that need to be discussed today. The whole world, or at least part of it, must come to an agreement in order to be able to achieve anything, and of course this cannot be done without consultation and discussion.  In these cases, English is often used because most people can express themselves in this language, but you would be surprised how many people do not master it. In such situations, translators and interpreters are much needed, and today more than ever.

Although we now have an unlimited number means of bridging every possible distance and getting in touch with everyone, we must not forget the downsides that come with it. Translators and interpreters have become indispensable today, and that's why International Translation Day exists on the 30th September, to honour their work, which makes our world a little smaller every day.


Emilie Debeuckelaere (Erasmus student – 2º TCI)

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Comments (1)
Lynn Summerfield (not verified)
13 November 2019 12:01 pm Reply

Congratulations on your articles!

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