Fenna La Gro

Fenna La Gro, M.A.

contact: fenna.la-gro [at] zsb.uni-halle.de

Research Focus:
Addressing and Positioning of Community Interpreters.
The Role of Training in Institutionalisation and Transformation of Community Interpreting in Germany.

The dissertation examines how and under which conditions ‘community interpreting’ is established in Germany. ‘Community interpreting’ is an interpreting service offered for migrants and refugees at institutions where there is no legal entitlement to interpretation (e.g., in schools, with public authorities or at hospitals). In Germany, there are no consistent regulations for how and under what conditions this type of interpreting takes place. On the one hand, tendencies towards professionalisation can be observed (establishment of training courses, more or less consistent rates, definitions of tasks). On the other hand, there are increasing numbers of interpreting platforms and training options for volunteer interpreters.

In my research, I am concerned with how interpreters are addressed and positioned within training courses. Training and educational settings offer contexts for the roles and tasks of interpreters to be negotiated, shaping how interpreting is perceived (for example, as work or as help). I am also interested in the interpreters’ views on training and further education and how interpreters’ perspectives on their work and themselves change. Adopting an ethnographic approach, the research will include participatory observation and qualitative interviews with different interpreters in two cities.