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Title: The identity of the professional interpreter : how students construct the identity of the professional interpreter in an Italian higher education institution
Author: Runcieman, Alan James
ISNI:       0000 0004 5917 9084
Awarding Body: King's College London
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2016
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Although professional interpreters are increasingly important in today’s world, helping minority language speakers in other nations in their pursuit of basic human rights, there has not as yet been any substantial empirical research into the institutions that train them. This research therefore aimed to fill this gap by carrying out narrative research, from an ethnographic perspective, to provide emic insights into how students construct the professional interpreter’s identity over the period of their first year in the institution. The research drew on small story narrative research, which analyses small, often fragmentary, co-constructed narratives as they emerge in situated talk. The analytical frame adopted was narrative positioning analysis, which analyses narratives on three levels: the level of the actual narrative told, the level of the tellers in the moment of the telling, and the level of wider Discourses that shape the first two levels. Narrative positioning is concerned with how narrators position themselves and others, as well as the characters in the narratives they tell, towards the social world. This positioning is then analysed to draw conclusions about the Discourses that shape their perceptions of the social world, providing insights into how they construct their social identities. By drawing on ethnographic data about the institution, certain Discourses were identified as being important in shaping student identities as they emerged in the narratives told. Furthermore, these Discourses provided insights into how the identity of the professional interpreter was constructed, and how students related their own identities to that construction, as well as the resources they perceived as being necessary to become interpreters. The research then aimed at identifying those Discourses that played an important role in shaping the image of the professional interpreter’s identity and how students navigated them in their first year in the institution. My analysis was ultimately directed at critiquing those Discourses, in order to make suggestions as to how the institution might better train students to become future interpreters.
Supervisor: Leung, Constant ; Coffey, Simon Joseph Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available