It seems like more than a year ago that we started looking forward to the publication of this book, and now the day is finally here! October 2, 2012, is a big day for our industry, as the long-awaited book Found in Translation: How Language Shapes Our Lives and Transforms the World, written by industry veterans Nataly Kelly and Jost Zetzsche, is being released today by a big publisher (Penguin/Perigree). We had the pleasure of reading both the manuscript and advance copies, as Judy wrote a review for the British magazine Bulletin of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting (ITI). You can read the full review here.
|A prominent spot on the shelf.|
This book is magnificently well written and, as opposed to many other language books that we love, it's quite accessible and easy to read. We hate to admit this, but some books on language make their authors seem like pedantic bores, and this book is quite the opposite. The authors manage to convey a large body of knowledge in an upbeat and entertaining tone. Cleverly subdivided into chapters that revolve around how translation and interpreting influence business, the arts, religion, business and more, this is a work of non-fiction that you can read one chapter at a time or all in one sitting, which is what we did. Full disclosure: both Nataly and Jost are friends of ours, which doesn't prevent us from giving this book an honest review. Even though we have been in the industry for a long time, it's truly eye-opening to discover how far-reaching our profession truly is. We learned a lot about languages of lesser diffusion, which was fantastic. We will be the first to admit that we don't regularly seek out information about languages other than the ones we translate, so it was very enlightening to read about all the languages spoken in Nigeria and about how one goes about creating a keyboard for some of these languages.
We were very fond of the clever subtitles, including Houston, We Need an interpreter. Yes, the Russians cosmonauts and the American astronauts need interpreters in order to be able to communicate with each other when at the International Space Station. How cool is that? Interpreters' influence extends to space!
It's absolutely delightful that we finally have a mainstream book about our profession that's accessible and interesting to those who are not in the profession. Ultimately, as a profession, we want the general public to know that what we do matters, and this book will leave little doubt that what we do matters a great deal. We are picking up a big shipment of Found in Translation to give away as Christmas presents to friends and family. We can't wait for our family members to read this. Perhaps it will finally help them understand what we do for a living and why the global economy would be much worse off without all of us. Be proud, interpreters and translators! This is a great day for all of us. Even though the book is being released today, it's already gone into its second printing, which means that sales have been much higher than expected.
While this book is widely available on online retailers such as Amazon, we encourage you to purchase this book from the only independent dictionary and language book retailer in the US, InTrans Book Service. Visit the book's website here.