What is the difference between a linguistic interpreter and a cultural interpreter?

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A linguist interpreter is someone who studies language: its structure, function, etc. There are many parts of linguistics, and many options in which language can be studied or researched.

Theoretical linguists study the structure of a language examples include; how speech can sound and when it can be put together to form words, and how words can be put together to form sentences.

Sociolinguists study how language is used and applied in society, and may study specific dialects or perform discourse analysis to find out as much as possible.

Applied linguists are responsible for finding various ways to apply the theoretical rules to real life situations, such as foreign-language learning and teaching.

Interpreting and translating is a part of applied linguistics.

Interpreters are people who take a discourse that started out in Language A and turn it into a sentence in Language B in real time, while the discourse is happening. Interpreters work in places like the United Nations, job interviews, and medical offices. They have to be fast and accurate.

Translators are people who take a written text that started out in Language A and turn it into a sentence in Language B in the library, with the aid of dictionaries and other study aids. They don’t have to be as fast as interpreters, but their final work product tends to look a lot tidier.

A cultural interpreter or translator plays an important role in organising successful communication with families or people who speak any language other than English. They function as an oral link between the culture of an enterprise and the culture of the members family. Their work requires two separate functions:

1.) Translating questions and responses accurately and impartially

2.) Interpreting information and recommendations to the family, as well as family history, family dynamics, and concerns.


A cultural mediator is an individual who helps translate between the culture of the situation and the culture of family in order to enhance understanding, share information, and create a relationship that supports families as full participants in the assessment process and delivering services.

An interpreter (or translator) is supposed to transfer the meaning (substance) of a word from one language to another. In other words, the interpreter’s job is to translate, change the word from meaning to meaning and then transform that meaning back into words in another language. 

Although the two areas are designed to communicate effectively with people for whom there is no language barrier, interpreting and translation are not interchangeable. Since interpreters need the ability to translate in two directions immediately and without reference material, they need to be fluent in both languages. Both professions need to find ways to transfer meanings from one language to another, but they do so in different ways and for different reasons. Working with written words means that the translator must also be a good writer. 

The nature of the work also places additional demands on the linguist, such as that his work must be precise and beautiful, and that it can be read in a way that no other language has. 

Interpreters and translators must transmit messages in the source language into their target language, and interpreters must transmit these messages either successively or simultaneously. In the case of written language such as English, the translator must work with an interpreter to convey his message as a text. 

If this is the case, the result makes little sense, since sentences in one language in another language are often constructed completely differently. Translators take what is written in their own language and rewrite it to produce something that can be read by a third party who does not speak the words in the original language, such as an interpreter. Professional translators always translate from one language to another, of course, and it is simply a matter of translating words and messages from one language to another. 

Interpretation is not a literal – for – translation of a spoken message. This means that the interpreter must transpose the source language in order to preserve its original meaning and at the same time rephrase it so that it is understood by the target group. 

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