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Presentation of LEXICONS

Sunday 27 June 2004

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Hello everyone!

From Oventic (Chiapas, Mexico), to European workers made redundant in downsizing moves, the consequences of globalisation are a threat all over the world. The logical response has been struggles, resistance and suggestions of alternative ways of doing things, which have also become globalised. Which necessarily leads to the question of language. To struggle together, to become enriched by each others’ experiences, to pool our efforts, we need to understand one another. As voluntary interpreters, we know we needn’t be forced to use garbled and approximate English to communicate.

We also know that the following insight is beginning to surface: a voluntary interpreter is not simply a machine who translates mechanically, who may be squeezed and moulded according to the subject-matter of her campaign.

The 2003 ESF was, for Babels. A chance to start work on facilitating the exchange of ideas, the comparison of suggestions and the establishment of alternative solutions at the heart of the social movement and of the international citizen.

The very first step is to help voluntary interpreters to master the vocabulary involved in the topic-areas approached in sessions next November. So here you’ll find glossaries, vocabulary lists, and lists of acronyms that already exist in other forms, in as many languages as we’ve been able to find them in. And, whenever it’s been possible, there is a list of key words on ESF themes, elaborated on with infinite patience by “babelian vocabularists”.

These lists are not exhaustive. Neither are they a reflection of wide reading around specific subjects; they simply represent what we’ve been able to pull together from the knowledge and help we’ve had from the most motivated organisations.

So it’s up to you to help us fill in any gaps ! Contact : voc@babels.org

The Babels team.