Is "So You Want to Be an Interpreter?" still good?

Discussion in 'Sign Language & Deaf Education' started by smokingskull, Dec 11, 2011.

  1. dogmom

    dogmom Well-Known Member

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    part of privilege is not knowing or hearing about a lot of these things....and also not getting the "undertone" of something that appears to be benign -
     
  2. Berry

    Berry New Member

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    And THAT is the truth.
     
  3. Reba

    Reba Retired Terp Premium Member

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    You're right, I never experienced my family doing that. I'm sorry that you went thru that. That's a horrible thing to say to a child. I have mixed-race cousins of unmarried parents and they were never treated that way by our family. I also have other white cousins who are married to black spouses, and it's no big deal to the family. Not all of our relatives are American born either.

    As far as school goes, when I was growing up, everyone was expected to behave politely in school, no matter who they were. That was also enforced by the students' parents. I went to public neighborhood schools, nothing special.

    This is the part that is puzzling:

    You were not actually told to "Act White" you were told to "act like ladies and gentlemen" and other races, nationalities, were disparaged for not doing it.

    Since I didn't experience that, can you describe to me what behaviors would be considered "White," and why other races and nationalities wouldn't be doing them?
     
  4. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man New Member

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    The flipside of that is that if the interpreter genuinely can't understand the Deaf person then communication isn't happening, and whatever point they're trying to make isn't being conveyed to the other party. All the other party sees is an angry Deaf person waving their hands around, but they have no idea what is being said. I think it would be fair for an interpreter to inform the Deaf person of this difficulty and then let them decide what they want to do about it.

    I see what you're saying, though, so it would probably be prudent to leave out the request for them to calm down and simply say, "I'm sorry, I'm having trouble understanding you right now, so I can't interpret."

    Just to let you know, I would be inclined to use the same control with a hearing person who was agitated to the point that I couldn't effectively interpret for them.
     
  5. Berry

    Berry New Member

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    I don't expect you to ever watch George Carlin, but in his early comedy he broke the cultural differences between WASPS and Blacks of the time to the bone. Gone With The Wind gives a pretty good lesson of what a lady should be like, partly because Scarlett resisted being one so well.

    My mother was raised to be a lady. She taught me how to act like a gentleman in case I ever needed the skill. Fortunately for my humanity I have avoided the need.

    In her day a lady sat on the front two or three inches of a chair, her knees together, to the side, preferably the right, her hands clasped on her thigh, not "in the lap" you see, her back was to be straight, never raise her voice, never look men, or people she did not know well in the eye. Always prim and proper. She was quite capable of walking around the room with a stack of books on her head.

    First off I use the term "White" because the phrase was used, "Like decent white people" around me. WASP is a very accurate term. No one I ever met called themselves that. White, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant. I might add inhibited. American Bandstand was considered an absolute horror. Civilized dancing was formal, ball room dancing. I might add that in order to be civilized you needed both money, friends who were the "right kind" and a full knowledge of etiquette. Table manners were, and still are, important if you wish to rise in the social world. Not to mention proper grammar at all times.

    You were always expected to behave politely, never naturally, do not raise your voice or use a lot of gestures as this was a sign you were "not in control of yourself" -- Please calm down and come back when you can act like a civilized person. You were never to become emotionally involved in any subject. Unless of course you were giving a speech to the masses.

    Other races, other nationalities, often came from other cultures. Other cultures do not always believe that you have to be the WASP definition of a "Lady" or a "Gentleman" all the time.

    Dancing in the streets? Standing on the corner, hollering at your friend across the street? Grown men in the front yard wrestling just for the fun of it? Bantering (That is calling each other names and putting each other down in verbal horseplay)? Just loud talking? Jumping up and down and waving? Men spraying each other down with beer on a hot summer's day? Singing while you worked?

    Here is a more recent example: Not Our Kind, Dear" (NOKD)

    The phrase was just like yours, No matter who they are they should be able to act civilized" like white people. "After all it doesn't cost a thing."

    They would happily tell you they were nor prejudiced against any race, creed, or color -- So long as they acted civilized. It always comes down to that. "No matter who you are" you can "Act like a civilized person."

    It is easy to see what side of the coin you are on. Do you see "being a lady" as the social ideal every woman of whatever race, creed, or color, should aspire too -- Or do you see a "lady" as a stuck up white broad who thinks she is better than everybody else?
     
  6. Berry

    Berry New Member

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    I never doubted you would say the same to a hearie.

    But you are apt to receive a similar response as my 14 year old grand daughter gave when told by a secretary, "Young lady, you need anger management classes."

    To which she replied, "You're damn right I do. Are you ready to take me outside and give me my first couple of lessons? Cause I'm up for it."
     
  7. Reba

    Reba Retired Terp Premium Member

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    Other than short excerpts from his shows, I never watched a full Carlin performance but I'm familiar with him. He's been dead a few years now.

    Maybe that's what a lady of ante-bellum South was like but that's not how the ladies of my lifetime were. :giggle:

    Wow, you did grow up in a restricted environment. Two of my cousins were on American Bandstand. I took dance lessons that included formal ballroom (taught by Russian immigrant dancers), and all the "hot" new dances of the 60's. In our family, class had nothing to do with money or material wealth (which is a good thing since we had no money). It was about behavior and knowledge.

    I was taught that politeness meant showing consideration for other people. I guess that might be considered unnatural. :dunno:

    Interesting. Were these the rules of just your family? Or were they the rules of your society? Or both?

    I guess if it's a "WASP" society, then people moving into it would assimilate those behaviors, just as WASPs moving into other societies would assimilate the behaviors of the other societies?

    Sounds like my Yankee ancestors. :lol:

    :confused: That wasn't my sentence.

    Each society, in time and place, defines its standards of behavior.

    I don't see anything ladylike about any woman, white, broad, or otherwise, who is stuck up or thinks she is better than everybody else.
     
  8. Berry

    Berry New Member

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    No, I didn't. I am a halfbreed, remember? My mother was raised by whites. I wasn't. When she took up with another Indian they felt she had "reverted to type." It was not my environment. It was the WASP environment I was exposed to.

    Of course now the general attitude towards Indians is no longer what it was in my youth. Now people with a teaspoon of Indian blood brag about their Native American ancestry. That wasn't the case then.

    You are aware that Dick Clark, and American Bandstand, came under criticism for allowing non-whites and whites to mix on the dance floor? Another show, that followed a similar format, did not. Fortunately the show that survived was American Bandstand. So far as I know Dick Clark did not even acknowledge the controversy and it just disappeared.

    From your posts I would consider you to have been raised middle class and to have suffered little or no prejudice yourself.

    It would also explain why you have such a hard time believing it even exists.

    It wasn't about money? And you had no money? But your family had the money to pay for your dance lessons?

    In my neighborhood the rich kids had a TV and learned how to do the "hot" new dances of the sixties by watching American Bandstand. Nobody could afford dance lessons. Most of us couldn't afford a TV. I still don't have a clue how to dance any of those.

    Politeness is only a small portion of manners. Also you can be excruciatingly polite and show absolutely no consideration for others.

    Neither. You missed the point. I'm a halfbreed. I have no society. As for family, there was none. Just my mother and myself. We lived between worlds as outsiders. Non white, non Christian, non Indian.


    I take it you did not read this Not Our Kind, Darling.

    Those in positions of power set the standards of behavior and those who are not in power follow them or suffer the consequences.

    What you see as "ladylike" and what being a lady consists of would appear to be at odds.

    A lady is offended by ill manners, poor grammar, lack of courtliness, improper clothing, crudity, vulgarity, and all manner of other things. She is above them. A lady would never associate herself, or allow herself to be associated with, anyone with less than proper repute. Nor anyone who was of lower station than herself. That includes non protestants.
     
  9. Mohave

    Mohave New Member

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    Fine line between professionalism and overboard, definitely! I thought the whole reason to become an interpreter is because you get along with the community, not distance yourself from it.
     
  10. Reba

    Reba Retired Terp Premium Member

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    That "WASP" restrictive environment is what I'm referring to. I suppose my immediate family environment would be considered WASP but it was nothing like what you experienced with your WASP relatives. One size does not fit all.

    True. Now even people without Indian blood try to claim some.


    Yes, I remember.

    Economically, middle class when I was little, lower middle class from about age 10 to 15, middle class for one year, then lower class again. Basically, poor during my teen and pre-teen years.

    You are correct that I didn't experience racial prejudice against myself. I was aware of it for others.

    I never said that. Of course there are prejudiced people.

    I earned money for my lessons, which weren't that expensive because the couple teaching them were Russian ex-pats who taught modern dance and baton, and had a parade unit that performed and competed. They did lots of stuff for little money. For my dance recital I wore a borrowed dress. (Most of my clothes were hand-me-downs from cousins, my grandmother and friends; it's funny that I was first-born yet I wore hand-me-downs; I had younger brother, so I couldn't pass them down. :lol: ) How many teenage girls now would wear hand-me-downs from their grandmothers?

    Since I lived in an apartment less than a mile from downtown, I could walk to the classes.

    I admit that we had a black & white TV with rabbit ears and a party-line phone.

    In my neighborhood, there weren't any rich kids. One exception--our landlord's family had a car and a piano, so I considered them rich.


    If someone is showing no consideration for others, that's not real politeness. Politeness and good etiquette is all about making others feel comfortable and respected.


    So, their rules didn't apply to you?

    I'm sorry that your families treated you that way. I'm just trying to say that not every family is like that, even when they are from different races, ethnicities, or cultures. My extended family included various races, nationalities, income levels, religions, and marital and birth statuses.


    Yes, I did read it.

    Or get off the path and set their own standards on the new path to positions of power.


    You're right. What I consider a lady is not the same. To me, a lady wouldn't use ill manners, poor grammar, inappropriate clothing, crude or vulgar language, or mean attitude but she wouldn't pass out if anyone else did.

    To me, a lady wouldn't make her close fellowships with people of dissimilar beliefs or unethical behaviors, regardless of socioeconomic status.

    Being a lady has nothing to do with money or pretentiousness. It's all about having a gracious attitude.

    Economically, my family was on the lower end but had friendly associations with wealthy people. There are some wealthy people who don't worry about impressing others, and they enjoy people's company just because they are interesting people. For those who are snobs, they aren't worth worrying about.

    I can see where it would be very hurtful for your own family to have a snobby attitude, and to judge people for shallow reasons.

    I don't deny that any of that exists. I hope you also don't deny that such attitudes and behavior are not universal.
     
  11. Kitten

    Kitten New Member

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    As an African-American native New Yorker, I always used my hands in conversations. Recently, a hearing ASL instructor said I was an "overly enthusastic" signer. Yes, I was insulted, but later after attending a lecture on Black ASL (I'm sorry, I forgot the name of the Professors who gave the lecture. They wrote a book; they're from Gallaudet), I learned that some minorities sign with more "flavor" than non-minorities. Personally, I think it's a NY thing. And a theatre thing, since I grew up in the theatre. At least for me.
     
  12. metalangel

    metalangel Active Member

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    Er... going back to the topic (the book)... does it matter which edition I get? I can get the 1995 for GBP£11, the 2001 for GBP£40, or the most recent (2007) at some great expense off a North American site.
     
  13. Crjosh

    Crjosh New Member

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    Hi there,

    I am going to college to become an interpreter and had the book for an intro to interpreting class. I still have the book and would recommend your girlfriend to get the book. Even if some of the reviews of the book aren't good, I think the book is very helpful. It has a lot of great information to use and apply when signing and interpreting. I am sure you're hearing similar things and what not, but I hope what I said helps!
     
  14. MusicInMotion67

    MusicInMotion67 New Member

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    Do YOU understand about Interpreting?



    Hahaha, I LOVE this, and it's so true. You have to be really secure in your relationship to date an Interpreter because as you said HIPPA laws don't only allow you to tell where you're going to interpret, but for who, nor can you talk about it to anyone else.

    I've been signing for 39 years and Interpreting for the past four or five years and there's a huge difference between just having a conversation and actually interpreting. Although I have signed almost all my life since age seven yes I'm dating myself, I don't trip on things like that. Anyway I figured it was time to become certified and now they require you to have a BA regardless to how long you've been signing, as they want you to know about Deaf History, Ethics, Culture, the whole nine yards and you don't get that by simply learning sign. Anyway great response dad. hahah I can't stop laughing.
     
  15. asongofhands

    asongofhands Member

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    Is this book/CD ROM really worth $650 new? Or $274 used?

    [ame=http://www.amazon.com/Want-Interpreter-Introduction-Language-Interpreting/dp/0976713268/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1410739197&sr=1-1&keywords=So+You+Want+to+Be+an+Interpreter]So You Want to Be an Interpreter? An Introduction to Sign Language Interpreting: Janice H. Humphrey: 9780976713265: Amazon.com: Books[/ame]
     
  16. nayness

    nayness New Member

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    actually, its fifty dollars used. Well, i paid 100 for the dvd and book unused. People over price it. If you go to the right place, its pretty cheap. Most schools with interpreting majors have it for about 100. Mine is somewhere around this room. Heck. many students every semester at golden west college return their's. they fear the teacher. He tells you that he'll make half the class drop by the middle of the semester. He did! I passed, cause I know better. He just wants people who are passionate about Deaf and their community. He gets so many that take the course for some "easy job". He hates it.
     

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