ROMA, 10 MAY 2023


Audiovisual translation, understood in a broad sense as synonymous with the localisation of media content and not only as a specific practice of language transfer, is undergoing a revolution that was unsuspected only a few years ago, even in those territories where viewers are less accustomed to localised content (Spiteri Miggiani, 2022). Digitalisation and technological changes, which have had such an impact on the way audiovisual texts, whether original, localised or adapted, are produced, distributed, edited, consumed, and shared, have also had a substantial impact on the audiovisual translation profession. In recent years, there have been three notable changes that have radically transformed the industrial process and professional conventions of the different modes of audiovisual translation (Chaume & de los Reyes Lozano, 2021). On the one hand, the increasingly frequent use of machine translation technologies, speech-to-speech translation (S2ST), speech-to-text translation (STT), automatic speech recognition (ASR), and the (not so novel) incorporation of the use of translation memories, which have significantly increased post-editing tasks, especially in subtitling, and have made translation tasks easier and cheaper. On the other hand, the emergence in the market of large video-ondemand platforms and streaming services, which have clearly changed the rules of the audiovisual translation game, not only in terms of labour relations with translators, but also because of the impact they are having on the new ways of producing and recording dubbing takes and producing subtitles, and also of consuming them. And finally, the third change has been the practice of dubbing and subtitling in the cloud, which has allowed the translator to interact with all the agents in the industrial process and with the client in real time. However, given this new scenario, it seems clear that the production of AVT and, in particular, dubbing, will no longer be, as it has been until now, a human process based solely on human decisions. In order to meet the growing demand for localised audiovisual products, more and more companies have decided to automate the translation and adaptation process to increase the pace of production while reducing their ecological footprint and enhancing teleworking. Moreover, ongoing innovations in artificial intelligence (AI) will soon shake up the world of translators and radically change the AVT approach. From a more ‘human’ viewpoint, inspiring or questionable examples of creativity can be witnessed in the work of audiovisual translators, expressed through authorial interventions on even the most hallowed and canonical texts, ranging from the films belonging to renowned directors to high quality TV series to global videogames. Creative translators and adapters have found ways and means to convey their own aesthetic touch by changing formats, defying conventions and adding or omitting content and, while doing so, ‘making a statement’. This increasingly rich and complicated scenario opens up a number of debates that require academic reflection and the support of industry stakeholders:

For example:

  1. Translation determines the creation of opinions and identities in the media. Translators have always been aware of this and taken an active role in these processes of creation. How can we control or simply monitor ideology in the age of machine translation (MT) and post editing (PE)?
  2. Machine translations run the risk of sounding flat and awkward. What is the place of creativity in this new era of AI, MT, and PE?
  3. Translator trainees now use machine translation on a daily basis, both at home and in class. What are the implications of the use of machine translation in the design of AVT curricula?
  4. Many videos are being translated with machine translation. Most of them are then postedited and submitted to the end client or simply broadcast. What are the implications of the use of machine translation for the translation profession?
  5. If human translation will soon no longer be needed, what are the new job profiles demanded by the audiovisual sector and to what extent does creativity form part of them?
  6. Creative didactic translation is, on the other hand, trendy in foreign language learning (FLL) classrooms. What is the role of creativity in foreign language acquisition via audiovisual translation?
  7. Audiovisual translators were creative also a long time ago and technologies which are now obsolete used to be ‘the thing’ way back when. How can a historical perspective help us to deal with our present challenges?
Following the first edition (Roma, 24-25 November 2021) of what we plan to become recurring appointments on the theme of creative AVT, this Giornata will try to shed light on these and other burning and thorny issues that are now completely changing the professional world of media localisation as well as the teaching and research of AVT.

Organisers: Frederic Chaume & Irene Ranzato
email: irene.ranzato@gmail.com; chaume@uji.es


Book of Abstracts


Frederic Chaume
Irene Ranzato
Frederic Chaume
Irene Ranzato
Leonardo Bagnulo
Helèna Chiricò
Luca Valleriani
Mary Wardle
Monika Wozniak


Sapienza, Edificio Marco Polo, ADDRESS: Circonvallazione Tiburtina 4, 00185 Roma. ROOM 107

Map of the Sapienza Marco Polo building

Venue: Università di Roma Sapienza, Dipartimento di Studi Europei Americani e Interculturali, Edificio ‘ Marco Polo’, Circonvallazione Tiburtina 4, 00185 Roma
Main transport stopping near Sapienza Marco Polo building:[Bus] Buses: 1052184925427188
[Treno] Trains: FC1
[Metro] Underground: AC
[Tram] Trams: 193


Fees: € 50; € 30 (PhD students); free for BA and MA students (with registration)

Registration and Payment: Fee includes access to the lecturers’ talks, lunch and 2 coffee-breaks. Link to registration form click here.
IMPORTANT: As well as filling the form, please write an email to irene.ranzato@uniroma1.itluca.valleriani@uniroma1.it stating your intention to register for the conference. This is to simplify payment and receipt procedures.

Free Registration for Students: BA and MA students need to write an email to irene.ranzato@uniroma1.itluca.valleriani@uniroma1.it stating their intention to register. You will receive confirmation by email a few days before the conference.

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