Celebrating Multilingualism and Translation

October 1, 2018 2:49 pm

Language is the most obvious means through which people get to know reality and connect with each other. Our own language is so natural that we sometimes forget what an important role it plays in our life. More than 6000 languages are used around the world and that only covers the officially recognized ones. This accounts for many thousands of perspectives and linguistic worlds that someone has to bring together in order to help the inter-connected world turn…

Since no single language has ever dominated the world in one standard variety, societal multilingualism can be perceived as a natural, almost inevitable phenomenon. It is the point where personal multilingualism mixes with the art and craft of translation, stepping in as a salient part of our global lives. Often, we do not notice the huge amount of work carried out by  translators who make our day-to-day lives easier and more comfortable. In certain situations, they even save our lives…

And this is the reason why it is important to celebrate translation. To remind ourselves that multilingualism is a genuine part of the human existence, helping to make our lives profoundly richer, and also to ensure the incredible work of translators is visible, valued, and appreciated. So, let us toast to the multilingual minds and to our translators! We celebrated the European Day of Languages on Friday, and the International Translation Day on Sunday.

By the way, do you know what is the most translated document of all time? Which books in particular come to mind? We can reveal that it is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which holds the Guinness World Record for this achievement, having been translated into more than 500 languages.

 

Sources:

  • United Nations. (2018). Celebrating Multilingualism. [online: here], retrieved on 01/10/2018.
  • Anderson, S.R. (not dated). How many languages are there in the world? Linguistic Society of America. [online: here], retrieved on 01/10/2018.

 


Written by  Veronika Lovritš Communication Study Visitor at the Terminology Coordination Unit of the European Parliament (Luxembourg) and a student of the Master Program in Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts at the University of Luxembourg. She holds an MA in Law and Legal Science and a BA in Sociology from the Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic. She speaks Czech, English, German, French and Luxembourgish.

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