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Troublesome Terps

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Troublesome Terps is a roundtable-style podcast covering topics from the interpreting space and the wider world of languages. The hosts - Jonathan Downie, Alexander Drechsel, Alexander Gansmeier, and Sarah Hickey - discuss them amongst themselves or with high-profile guests from the industry.




Troublesome Terps is a roundtable-style podcast covering topics from the interpreting space and the wider world of languages. The hosts - Jonathan Downie, Alexander Drechsel, Alexander Gansmeier, and Sarah Hickey - discuss them amongst themselves or with high-profile guests from the industry.




70: Leaving Interpreting? [Recorded Twitter Space]

This is a recorded live audio conversation on Twitter Spaces ( On 26 April, 2022, Alex D, Aleksander Szojda-Pallado and Urszula Rapacka explored if life after interpreting is possible. This job is often very personal. So what can we do after or in addition to interpreting? We believe we actually have a lot of skills beyond “just interpreting” that we can apply in various contexts.


69: The Final One

In this last episode of the Troublesome Terps, we look back at six years of podcasting, great guests and topics, and generally lots of trouble. We also have a very open chat about mental health and depression. In the future, we want to make the podcast available to our community. If you have a topic you would like to discuss with anyone, just let us know and we'll be happy to provide our platform to share it with the community! Thank you for having been part of our journey and all your support and we are beyond excited for what's in store for the Troublesome Terps podcast! Sarah, Alex D, Alex G and Jonathan


68: 2021 in Review

Even in the second year of the pandemic, the Troublesome Terps didn't show any signs of slowing down and started the year with an ELF on the shelf, took you to the UK and then on an actual trip around the world, talked about AI and interpreting, why interpreter networks are a thing, joined a book club (and wrote a little something ;-) ) and closed the year with the first ever language podcastival. Phew!


67: The Translation & Interpreting Podcastival

Podcasts are everywhere, so what to listen to? To help you along here, the Troublesome Terps reached out to some of our favorite language related podcast-superstars and invited them to join our first ever live #podcastival. The goal was to celebrate the language industry at large in all its beautiful diversity with all its shades and wrinkles and shine a spotlight on these fabulous contributions - if we missed your favorite language podcast, do let us know and enjoy our #podcastival! Special Guests: Ada Volkmer, Carrie Gillon, Cate Hamilton, Corinne McKay, Eve Lindemuth Bodeux, Florian Faes, Gretchen McCulloch, Lauren Gawne, Madalena Sánchez Zampaulo, Megan Figueroa, Michaela Haller, Michael Stevens, Tamara Muroiwa, Tucker Johnson, and Veronika Demichelis.


66: Book Club with Elisabet Tiselius & Michaela Albl-Mikasa

With Sarah and Alex G away on assignment, Jonathan and Alex D sit down with renowned interpreting scholars Elisabet Tiselius and Michaela Albl-Mikasa to discuss the Routledge Handbook of Conference Interpreting. The two guests take us behind the scenes of putting together a scientific publication, from A to Z. Read, improve and comment on our transcript. ( Special Guests: Elisabet Tiselius and Michaela Albl-Mikasa.


65: Ebru Diriker, Are Interpreters Who They Say They Are?

Who we say we are and who we actually are, are not always necessarily the same thing. Even interpreters who think of themselves as completely invisible and impartial will sometimes be forced to make some tough calls. Joining the Troublesome Terps to talk about this, her research and much, much more is Ebru Diriker. Don't miss this episode to have some of your assumptions challenged! Special Guest: Ebru Diriker.


64: A quick summer update

All four (!) troublemakers check in briefly to wish you all a wonderful summer and provide a sneak peek at what the autumn/fall will bring.


63: Interpreters Assemble!

Interpreters seldom come alone - especially, if they are part of an interpreting network all their own! Join Alex and Alex as they interview three members of three very different networks to discover, what the pros and cons of being part of a network are, how you can start one yourself and what the different "models" are. A truly inspiring episode about solidarity, common interests and mutual support! Special Guests: Louise Jarvis, Monika Ott, and Sybelle van Hal-Bock.


62: AI versus Interpreting - with Graham Turner and Henry Líu

With machine translation having become almost an everyday staple in the language industry, the discussion continues to shift towards artificial intelligence and how it may impact the future of interpreting and interpreter training. To discuss this topic from two perspectives, Henry Líu and Professor Graham Turner join the Troublesome Terps to tackle this crucial and controversial topic head on. Listen in and let us know what YOU think about our future and our possible co-existence with the C3POs of this world in the comments of on social media! Special Guests: Graham Turner and Henry Liu.


61: Multilingual is Normal w/ Cate Hamilton

Joined by the lovely Cate Hamilton, Sarah and Alex G. go on to explore a fascinating world of language learning, Norwegian children's songs, baby scientists and why #MultilingualIsNormal. A brilliant episode for every language lover and interpreter or translator out there, who each surely have some linguistic anecdotes themselves! Special Guest: Cate Hamilton.


60: I Can Show You the World (of Interpreting)

Two Troublesome Terps embark on a trip around the world in (more or less) 60 minutes for our 60th episode! From Australia to Germany, Egypt to Japan, from the USA to Vietnam and many more, we are taking you on a whirlwind tour across different interpreting markets with the help of some friends. A very special clip show style episode you won't want to miss!


59: How do Interpreters Think?

The age old question, that has eluded our partners for centuries. Jonathan and Alex G. sit down with Kilian Seeber to find answers. Maybe. Special Guest: Kilian Seeber.


58: The UK Special

In this episode, the Troublesome Terps welcome Kirsty Heimerl-Moggan and Paul Appleyard to discuss the challenges faced in the UK language market - current, previous and upcoming. From Brexit and linguist supply and demand, to Covid and RSI, to how the PSI sector and professional bodies such as the ITI have responded to the changing environment, this episode is full of information, surprises and a bit of cheek! Special Guests: Kirsty Heimerl-Moggan and Paul Appleyard.


57: The ELF on the Shelf

Jonathan and the Alexes kick off 2021 by talking about a topic we have covered before: English as a lingua franca. In light of the global political shifts, Brexit and changing global travel (or lack thereof), is English still the undisputed "Global Language"? And what even IS English?


56: 2020 in Review and our first Annual Awards

After a most definitely troublesome 2020 for the entire world, we thought we put a different spin on our annual Year In Review show and turn it into a celebration of the most favorite episodes and guests, all as voted by you, the fans! And the award goes to...???


55: New Ways of Working w/ Elena Davitti

This episode's topic seems to be of a particular relevance right now at a time, when interpreters around the world are diversifying more than ever. Elena Davitti joins the Troublesome Terps and details her research on interlingual respeaking, how there is now the option to shape a whole new language serivice and why and how interpreters and language professionals at large can get started in this new field. Special Guest: Elena Davitti.


54: Interpreting in Conflict Zones w/ Antonio Posada

You think you've had a nerve-wracking assignment? Think again and listen in as our guest Antonio Posada talks us through some select experience from his time working in proper conflict zones in and around Colombia. From meetings with guerilla fighters, to going on relief missions in warn torn villages and literally being under fire on the job, you won't believe your ears. Special Guest: Antonio Posada.


53: Starting Out as an Interpreter

The Troublesome Terps are going live again, 2020-style: on YouTube! Together with a dedicated live audience and a lot of previously collected input from our listeners, we discuss the trials and tribulations of starting out as an interpreter, what's different in 2020 compared to when we kicked things off and what some challenges, but also some opportunities for new #terps are.


52: Don't be a Bully

Inspired by Jonathan's very own survey on bullying, both Alexes and Jonathan discuss the issue of bullying within in the interpreting space, with the help of our very own short survey on bullying filled out byaudience members, sharing very personal experiences. From sexism, to classism in interpreting, spreading lies and outright hostile behavior we talk about how to spot bullying, what to do about it and what we hope for the interpreting industry as a whole.


51: Getting Wordly with Lakshman Rathnam

In our 51st episode, which harkens back to our very first episode ever, "Dictionaries on Legs", the Troublesome Terps are meeting Lakshman Rathnam, CEO of wordly to talk to him about all things "machine interpreting". From speech-to-text and back again, to robots taking over the interpreting space (or not?), come and join us on this interesting discussion - and witness the man who wrote the book on Machine Interpreting go "toe to toe" with Silicon Valley. Special Guest: Lakshman Rathnam.