Footnotes: how do you deal with the Chicago Referencing System?
Thread poster: Tom in London

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:15
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Mar 16, 2013

Colleagues will no doubt be familiar with the Chicago Referencing System, which in English is the recognised standard method, in academic texts, for giving the details of publications, books, papers, etc. to which the text refers. These references are usually given as footnotes or endnotes.

But in other languages, the Chicago Referencing System is not used and this presents us with a problem.

In my own case (Italian to English) I'm frequently asked to translate Italian academic texts that come with lots of footnotes. The footnotes do not adhere to the Chicago Referencing System and it is an extremely onerous task to reconfigure them so that they do.

Do you demand additional payment for this?

(In my wilder dreams, I see a magic piece of software that will do it for me.....)

[Edited at 2013-03-16 11:27 GMT]


 

John Holland  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:15
Member (2012)
French to English
Zotero is an option Mar 16, 2013

Hi, Tom.

I do charge a higher rate if I need to do that kind of work on footnotes. Although I suppose it would be possible to charge separately for this, I just adjust the rate per word.

You might find the bibliography management software Zotero to be a useful tool. Once you have put references into the Zotero database and then into a document, it is very simple to change the formatting of the entire document to different styles, including Chicago, as needed. Zotero is free (libre, GPL), cross-platform software that integrates with different browsers and word-processors:
https://www.zotero.org/
https://www.zotero.org/support/screencast_tutorials

Incidentally, I'd say that while Chicago style is one of the main styles used in academic papers, there are others that are just as widely used (MLA style, APA style, etc.):
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citation#Styles

And then, individual journals can have their own particular deviations from the different manuals, as well...


 

Phil Hand  Identity Verified
China
Local time: 06:15
Chinese to English
Just in the middle of one of these myself Mar 16, 2013

I don't ask extra, but occasionally regret it when the formatting seems to take as much time as the translation.

If the references are good, I don't find at a problem. I can adjust the format as I go during the translation process. The problem comes when the references are improper (misspellings, use of author's first name instead of surname(!), references to a chapter when it should be a book, etc.) Then I think I need to go through the bibliography before I can even understand what the references are, so I leave them all to the end, and that makes for a very heavy day or two.


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:15
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks John Mar 16, 2013

John Holland wrote:

.........
You might find the bibliography management software Zotero to be a useful tool.


MS Word already incorporates a bibliography and citation management tool but I can't work out how to use it icon_frown.gif - yet....

[Edited at 2013-03-16 15:19 GMT]


 

John Holland  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:15
Member (2012)
French to English
Zotero + Word Mar 17, 2013

If you look into Zotero, don't miss the word processor integration for Microsoft Office and LibreOffice/OpenOffice/NeoOffice, which substitutes for the built-in citation management systems of those word processors:

https://www.zotero.org/support/word_processor_integration

It's a tool, so there's no magic. All the same, I've been using Zotero since 2007 for my own research in addition to my translation work, and I really can't recommend it highly enough to people who work with academic texts.


 

S E (X)
Italy
Local time: 00:15
Italian to English
EndNote Mar 17, 2013

Hi Tom,

I used EndNote as a PhD student, and use it now, occasionally, for translating.

Here are some of its plus points:

1. There's a Word plug in called Cite While You Write which lets you automatically change the style of footnotes:

http://endnote.com/en/create

2. There's a Mac version.

3. There's a 30-day free trial, so you can see for yourself if this is the 'magic' solution you are yearning for:

http://endnote.com/downloads/30-day-trial

Sarah


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:15
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Alas.... Mar 18, 2013

My task is to take bibliographies that include a mixture of references published in Italian, English, Spanish etc. and that have not been formatted in the style I want (in my case, Chicago).

Alas, none of the solutions suggested seem to offer the ability to access databases in languages other than English.

Endnote also seems to have recurring problems of not being compatibile with the (very frequent) service updates to MSWord.

[Edited at 2013-03-18 15:27 GMT]


 

John Holland  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:15
Member (2012)
French to English
Non-English databases Mar 19, 2013

Zotero definitely can use databases in languages other than English.

The one I use most often for French texts is the on-line catalog of the SUDOC (Système Universitaire de Documentation), which covers all of the university libraries and research centers in France. I also use the on-line catalog of the Bibliothèque nationale de France and and, for journal articles, another catalog that is RDF-enabled.

Zotero will import references and PDFs when available from Google Scholar, which is multilingual. Another resource that comes in handy at times is the WorldCat on-line catalog, which is international and works with Zotero, as well:
http://www.worldcat.org/

Zotero actually supports many different standards and formats. Here's some documentation on this:
https://www.zotero.org/support/translators

It's definitely worth trying to see if databases you use are supported (either be looking into what format they use or just by visiting them in a Zotero-enabled browser). You could also look to see if there isn't some kind of database for the Italian university system.

FWIW, the documentation on the Zotero site is quite good, if you haven't run across it yet:
https://www.zotero.org/support/



[Edited at 2013-03-19 01:18 GMT]


 


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Footnotes: how do you deal with the Chicago Referencing System?

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