Collaboration and crowdsourcing in "Calais children. A case to answer". Subtitling strategies in documentary films
Conference name
Media for All 8
As Miguel Jiménez Crespo remarks, the “advent of new technologies has had a profound impact on translation practices, giving rise to a wide range of fascinating phenomena that are reshaping translation practices and public perceptions” (2017:1). The 21st-century scenario of multilingual and multicultural exposure, and the advances in computer-mediated communication and technological solutions (Herring 1996; 2011), have accelerated the growth of audiovisual translation in professional and non-professional contexts (Péréz-González 2014; Massidda 2015). Citizens’ participation in volunteer translation activities has been reinforced by crowdsourcing mechanisms that have encouraged individuals and organizations to diffuse accounts of emergency campaigns of solidarity for humanitarian themes. The open and interactive nature of Web 2.0 (O’Hagan and Ashworth 2002) has above all increased the number of participatory platforms for crowdsourcing interventions in the dissemination of political issues (i.e. the migration crisis) within the creative industries (Moslund et al. 2015). Within this framework, collaboration and crowdsourcing (i.e. collaborative translational settings, including fansubbing and fandubbing projects) have emerged as translational activities based on collaborative knowledge-generation and knowledge-transfer (Alfer 2017).

The recent movements of “activist-volunteers” (Clayton 2018: 41) are guaranteeing, on the one hand, the work of experts in the cinema and non-broadcast media for humanitarian causes through crowdsourcing platforms for fundraising and, on the other, are providing civil mobilisation around the “refugee crisis through social media and live interaction all over Europe” (ibidem). A growing number of artists and filmmakers are indeed financially sustained for the promotion of works of art and their dissemination through channels of collaborative translation.

Against a backdrop of networked public participation and physical mobility, this work investigates the modalities through which migration is portrayed in the politics of aesthetic discourse, while accelerating activism in the area of amateur translation for the reframing of the migrant crisis. The focus is on a qualitative survey of the audiovisual translation strategies (Díaz Cintas and Remael 2007) that volunteer translators adopted to subtitle British filmmaker Sue Clayton’s documentary film CalaisChildren: A Case to Answer (2016) into Italian and French. The modalities and approaches of volunteer translation vary according to the Italian and French target contexts, but also depend on specific-genre difficulties, including colloquialism, documentary film techniques, such as direct and indirect interviews, onscreen and offscreen interviews (de Higes-Andino 2014; 2016; Franco 2001; Franco et al., 2010).

Drawing on recent research on narrative theory in translating dissent (Baker 2016), the analysis compares and contrasts the Italian and French subtitled versions through the adoption of Halliday’s Systemic Functional Linguistics (2004) as an instrument for the discovery of meaning-related choices within interlingual subtitling. Results prove that volunteer translation, viewed as a practice particularly appropriate for the spread of political content, can potentially contribute to counter narrating the plight of otherwise voiceless minority identities within aesthetic discourse.
Submitted by Irene Tor on Mon, 08/07/2019 - 12:53