The Interpreter’s Aging: A Unique Story of Multilingual Cognitive Decline?

Min-hua Liu, Ingrid Kurz, Barbara Moser-Mercer, Miriam Shlesinger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This article reports the first phase of the AIIC Lifespan Study, for which ten conference interpreters over 70 years old were interviewed to learn how interpreters’ professional language experiences interact with their cognitive functions and, specifically, if they demonstrate different patterns of cognitive decline regarding language use. The interview transcripts were coded to identify examples that matched the items in the research-informed interview guide or any emerging patterns that informed the theme of cognitive changes. The interviewees experienced some aging-induced cognitive challenges, such as comprehension difficulties in less than optimal environments, concentration and memory issues, and slowness in lexical retrieval. Some of these challenges had an impact on some interviewees’ decision to quit interpreting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)286-309
JournalTranslation, Cognition & Behavior
Volume3
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020

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