• When translating news lands you in prison
    To suppress freedom of the press, some regimes arrest, prosecute and imprison translators
  • When staying incognito is paramount to staying alive
    Interpreters in war zones must wear masks to avoid being kidnapped, tortured and killed
  • When interpreting for journalists puts you in the cross hairs
    Targeted by state and non-state actors, interpreters face the fallout from controversial stories

News & More

Criminalizing the profession

POSTED ON October 18 th, 2018

Historically, the role of translators and interpreters has suffered from multiple misconceptions. In theaters of war, these linguists are often viewed as traitors and kidnapped, tortured, or killed; if they work in the terrorism arena, they may be prosecuted and convicted as terrorist agents. In a complex, highly charged post-9/11 case, Mohamed Yousry, an Arabic linguist and scholar of Middle Eastern history, was labeled such an agent, his work as a translator/interpreter construed as material support to terrorism, and his subject-matter expertise recast as dangerous knowledge. For an in-depth ethnographic examination of his trial, which was the impetus for launching Red T, go to: https://academicworks.cuny.edu/gc_etds/226/