Research

Doctoral Research

We are currently undertaking PhD research projects exploring the impact of the in-vision sign language interpreter on televised dramatic texts, and the maintenance of coherence in sign language interpreted theatre. The research is conducted at the University of Leeds in the School of Modern Languages & Cultures - Centre for Translation Studies.

Alex McDonald and Siobhán Rocks have both been invited lecturers on the MA in Applied Translation Studies at the University of East Anglia (UEA). Additionally Siobhán has also lectured on the MA Interpreting course at Queen's University, Belfast, whilst Alex has previously worked as a Senior Lecturer in Intepreting at the University of Wolverhampton.

Publications

Publication 2016

Siobhán's chapter 'Seeking Invisibility: Performance, Space, and Role in British Sign Language Interpreted Theatre' will be published in Invisible Presences: Translation, Dramaturgy and Performance, edited by David Johnston, Alyson Campbell, & Kurt Taroff, and is currently in press.

Publication 2015

Siobhán Rocks's entry 'Theatre Interpreting' was published in the Routledge Encyclopedia of Interpreting Studies, edited by Franz Pochhacker, on the 8th October 2015.

Publication 2012

Alex's paper 'The In-vision Sign Languge Interpreter in British Television Drama' was published in May 2012 in Audiovisual Translation and Media Accessibility at the Crossroads, edited by Aline Remael, Pilar Orero, and Mary Carroll, Amsterdam/New York, Rodopi.

The paper explores the current approaches to the work of the in-vision sign language interpreter, presents evidence of current research this area, and proposes how interpreters can use the programme's visual structure in presenting his/her rendition.

The publication, the third volume in the Media for All series, offers a diverse selection of articles which bear testimony to the vigour and versatility of research and developments in audiovisual translation and media accessibility. The collection reflects the critical impact of new technologies on AVT, media accessibility and consumer behaviour and shows the significant increase in collaborative and interdisciplinary research targeting changing consumer perceptions as well as quality issues. Complementing newcomers such as crowdsourcing and potentially universal emoticons, classical themes of AVT studies such as linguistic analyses and corpus-based research are featured. Prevalent throughout the volume is the impact of technology on both methodologies and content. The book will be of interest to researchers from a wide range of disciplines as well as audiovisual translators, lecturers, trainers and students, producers and developers working in the field of language and media accessibility.

Publication 2011

Siobhán's chapter 'The Theatre Sign Language Interpreter and the Competing Visual Narrative: the translation and interpretation of theatrical texts into British Sign Language' appears in the 2011 publication by Palgrave Macmillan, Staging & Performing Translation: Text & Theatre Practice, edited by Baines, Marinetti & Perteghella.

'This is a fascinating, original and timely book. It succeeds in creating a space where theatre practice and theatre translation are able to meet. The majority of the essays, interventions and discussions in the volume are grounded in the theatre making process, and there are a wealth of different perspectives offered on what that the difficult word - practice – means for translators who work in the theatre.'
- Carl Lavery, Senior Lecturer in Theatre, Aberystwyth University, UK

Past Presentations

2014 Presentations

Alex McDonald and Siobhán Rocks both presented at the 10th Languages & The Media International Conference on Language Transfer in Audiovisual Media at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Berlin, from November 5 – 7, 2014.

Under the theme “Smart Technologies. Smart Translations”, an international audience of more than 240 experts from thirty seven countries gathered at the event.

Alex McDonald presented his paper 'Analysing Sign Language Interpreter Activity in British Television Drama' and Siobhán Rocks presented her paper 'To See Or Not To See: Analysing Interpreter Activity in Sign Language Interpreted Theatre'.

Siobhán Rocks was an invited plenary speaker at the ASLI conference Professionalism - Lifting the Lid on Interpreting held at The Lowry, in Salford, 27th & 28th September.

Siobhán presented her paper 'Adventures in Space and Time: The theatre sign language interpreter as audiovisual translation professional.'

At the conference Alex McDonald also presented his paper the 'Beyond the fourth Wall the in-vision BSL interpreter'.

2013 Presentation

Alex McDonald and Siobhán Rocks presented their joint paper 'A national professional development programme for theatre sign langauge interpreters' at the 5th International Media for All conference Audiovisual Translation: expanding borders in Dubrovnik, Croatia, 25th - 27th September 2013.

The conference, brought together professionals, scholars, practitioners and other interested parties to explore audiovisual translation (AVT) in theory and practice, to ascertain the language needs of distributors and broadcasters, to discuss the linguistic and cultural dimensions of AVT, to look into potential synergies between the industry and the academic worlds, and to investigate the relevance and application of translation theory for this very specific and rapidly expanding translational genre.

2012 Panel Discussion

Alex McDonald chaired and participated in a panel discussion at the Languages & the Media: 9th International Conference on Language Transfer in Audiovisual Media, 21st - 23rd November 2012, in Berlin.

The panel discussed the issues around 'Sign Language Interpreting and AVT: Now and Next ' and consisted of Siobhán Rocks (University of Leeds) and Diana Sánchez (Director of Red Bee Media - Spain and Germany).

2012 Presentations

Alex McDonald and Siobhán Rocks recently presented papers the 25th Canadian Association of Translation Studies (CATS) conference, 30th May - 1st June 2012, which focused on the theme of 'Translation, Texts, Media'.

The CATS conference took place under the aegis of the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences Federation of Canada and for the first time focused on the issue of Audiovisual Translation.

Siobhán presented her paper 'Of Space and Time: The Influence of the Performace text on the Theatre Sign Language Interpreter's Translation,' whilst Alex presented the paper 'Television Drama, the Sign Language Interpreter, and the Fourth Wall,' on the second day of the conference.

2011 Presentations

Alex McDonald and Siobhán Rocks presented their joint paper 'Pretend I’m Not Here: The British Sign Language Interpreter and the Audiovisual Text' at the Points of View in Language and Culture in Krakow, Poland, 14th - 15th October 2011.

The International Conference on Audiovisual Translation in Krakow was a response to a growing body of research in this area with ever-increasing demands placed on interpreters and translators. Special attention was given to the developments in audiovisual translation theory and their practical application.

Siobhán Rocks presented the paper 'An Annotation Tool for the Analysis of Sign Language Interpreted Theatre' at the 4th International Media for All Conference ­ Audiovisual Translation: Taking Stock in London 28th June - July 1st 2011.

The conference brought together professionals, scholars, practitioners and other interested parties and explored audiovisual translation (AVT) in theory and practice, ascertaining the language needs of distributors and broadcasters, discussed the linguistic and cultural dimensions of AVT, and investigated the relevance and application of translation theory for this very specific and rapidly expanding translational genre.

Siobhán Rocks presented 'Seeking Invisibility: performance, role and space in British Sign Language interpreted theatre' at the Invisible Presences: Translation, Dramaturgy and Performance in Queen's University, Belfast. 18th-20th April 2011.

The international conference explored the dramaturgical processes of translation in performance practice, whether across language and culture or the translation of ideas into material production.

2010 Presentation

Alex McDonald presented the paper ‘The In-vision Sign Language Interpreter in British Television Drama' at the 3rd International Media for All - Quality Made to Measure Conference in Antwerp, Belgium, on the 22nd-24th October 2010.

2007 Presentation

Alex McDonald & Siobhán Rocks presented 'The Theatre Sign Language Interpreter and the Competing Visual Narrative: the translation and interpretation of theatrical texts into British Sign Language' at the Staging Translated Plays: Adaptation, Translation and Multimediality Conference, UEA, Norwich (29 June-1 July 2007).