How to become an excellent italian-english translator and vice versa?
Thread poster: Basma Hakim

Basma Hakim
Egypt
Local time: 08:49
Arabic to English
+ ...
Jan 28, 2016

Hello;
I'm Basma from Egypt.I studied Italian and English language and I want to start translating from and to both, but I do not know how. Please help me, I searched free courses for this or free translated samples or free training but unfortunately no result, so what I can do?

Thanks in advance.


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Serena Basili  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 08:49
English to Italian
+ ...
Salam Basma! Jan 28, 2016

My opinion is that you can professionally translate INTO a language that is not your native one ONLY after you have been living in the country where it is spoken, i.e. Italy and/or UK/Ireland/USA/Canada/Australia/New Zealand for many years (and I would suggest to have a proofreader for at least the first translations to check quality, however).
In fact, the level of knowledge required for translating in a professional manner into any language is the same of a native speaker.

What I can suggest is that you keep on with your studies in Italian and English and use these as SOURCE languages, having only Arabic -I guess it's your mother tongue, right? - as your target language.

icon_smile.gif !! بالتوفيق

[Edited at 2016-01-28 13:06 GMT]


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Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 13:49
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
My initial success Jan 28, 2016

Serena Basili wrote:

My opinion is that you can professionally translate INTO a language that is not your native one ONLY after you have been living in the country where it is spoken, i.e. Italy and/or UK/Ireland/USA/Canada/Australia/New Zealand for many years (and I would suggest to have a proofreader for at least the first translations to check quality, however).


I was initially successful to translate among languages that are not my mother tongue when the marketplace was constrained badly. Now most clients have freedom to choose from many translators and translating into native tongues is the primary requirement. I agree with Serena on how to fight with this constraint. However, translation job is much deeper than mastering one or two foreign languages: we need insights on the subject we are translating.

Soonthon L.


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:49
Member (2008)
Italian to English
An expert Italian to English translator responds Jan 28, 2016

Basma Hakim wrote:

Hello;
I'm Basma from Egypt.I studied Italian and English language and I want to start translating from and to both, but I do not know how. Please help me, I searched free courses for this or free translated samples or free training but unfortunately no result, so what I can do?

Thanks in advance.


Q. How to become an excellent italian-english translator ?

A. English must be your mother tongue and you must have lived and worked in Italy for (I would say) at least five years.

"and vice versa": there is no vice-versa. Those who claim to be able to translate from their mother tongue into their second language are not telling the truth; first to themselves, and secondly to others.


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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 07:49
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Do only what you can excel in Jan 28, 2016

Do you think you can produce better EN>IT or IT>EN translations than native speakers of those languages? If not, leave it to them - there are enough of both, after all.

As for training, I'm not sure exactly what's available but I don't think you should rely on it being free. If you aren't prepared to invest anything in your chosen career, it would be better not to waste time on it.

One thing that translating is NOT is a little part-time job that will bring in a bit of cash with no investment. That's a job in a shop etc. Translating is about being an entrepreneur, an intellectual service provider.

[Edited at 2016-01-28 15:33 GMT]


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:49
Member (2008)
Italian to English
As Serena says Jan 28, 2016

Basma Hakim wrote:

Hello;
I'm Basma from Egypt.I studied Italian and English language and I want to start translating from and to both, but I do not know how. Please help me, I searched free courses for this or free translated samples or free training but unfortunately no result, so what I can do?

Thanks in advance.


As Serena says:

Assuming that your mother tongue is Arabic, you should focus on translating from Italian and English into Arabic.

And not vice-versa !


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Merab Dekano  Identity Verified
Spain
Member (2014)
English to Spanish
+ ...
How? Jan 29, 2016

Basma Hakim wrote:

Hello;
I'm Basma from Egypt.I studied Italian and English language and I want to start translating from and to both, but I do not know how. Please help me, I searched free courses for this or free translated samples or free training but unfortunately no result, so what I can do?

Thanks in advance.


"Free translation samples": you can find them visiting this website:

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/homepage.html

There are parallel texts in all EU's official languages, including Italian and English.

"Free translation courses": there are no worthwhile free translation courses. Here, I'm afraid, "free" is tantamount to "crap". Bear in mind that once you produce translation work, someone needs to correct it and relay back all those changes and explanation to you. Who's going to do it for free?

"But I do not know how": take a text in, say, English and translate it into Italian. Then find an Italian friend and ask them to read it. Accuracy apart (you can learn it), if your Italian friend asserts that your text flows naturally and that they even thought it was initially written in Italian rather than being a translation into it, you'll probably have to consider it as a good start (bear in mind that translation is not exclusively focused on natural flow of the language, but you certainly cannot do without it, and you cannot learn it; you have it or you do not).

My opinion, just like that of other colleagues who made their point clear, is that if you merely studied those two languages, and studied them well, consider visiting those countries and staying there for, at least, three years. Then try to translate from those languages into your mother tongue. It might work.


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