Multimodal Translation with the Blind

Project Details


The project studies translating from the perspective of collaboration and multimodal interaction. As a case in point is the process of audio description in which a team of sighted and blind describers creates a verbal translation of a film for the benefit of visually impaired audience. The project renders new insight into translation processes and interaction by analysing how translations are created interactively and multimodally. It investigates the use of spoken and bodily resources in displaying and sharing translation strategies and solutions as well as the non-sighted describers' use of the soundtrack and the sighted describers' speech in interpreting the film. The main data are video recordings from authentic audio description processes in various countries. The project's results produce new knowledge of translating and interaction and help to identify visually impaired persons' expertise in multimodal tasks, which can be applied to foster diversity at workplace.
Effective start/end date01/01/201731/12/2019


  • SUOMEN AKATEMIA: €248,858.00

Fields of Science

  • 6121 Languages
  • 6160 Other humanities
  • Translation Studies
  • 518 Media and communications
  • Film Studies


Research Output

Audiodeskription und Sichtdolmetschen: Translation über Sinnesgrenzen: Eine Begriffsanalyse

Translated title of the contribution: Audio description and visual interpreting: Translation across sensory barriers: A conceptual analysisHirvonen, M. I., 2018, Spielräume der Translation: Dolmetschen und Übersetzen in Theorie und Praxis. Kvam, S., Meloni, I., Parianou, A., Schopp, J. & Solfjeld, K. (eds.). Münster: Waxmann

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review

Blindheit als Ressource: Zur professionellen Kompetenz eines blinden Teammitglieds bei der gemeinsamen Anfertigung einer Audiodeskription

Translated title of the contribution: Blindness as resource: On the professional competence of a blind team member in a cooperative audio description processHirvonen, M. I. & Schmitt, R., 2018, In : Gesprächsforschung. 19, p. 449-477 29 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Open Access
Open Access


Multimodal translation in audio description

Hirvonen, M. (Creator), Maija Hirvonen, 2016



Translation as interactive meaning constitution and negotiation

Maija Hirvonen (Speaker)
13 Mar 2018

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk