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Language, Translation, and conflict

Landscape with Animals

Interpreting in Conflict 


I have in particular looked at the role of conflict interpreters involved in the process of conflict resolution on various levels, and in different situations, as well as discussed the unique role of interpreters working with refugees in emergency situations as a direct result of violent conflict. 


Photo credit: Grassroots Future

Refugee Lives in Translation

In the process of integration into their host country, refugees undertake various activities that involve translation, from cooking their home meals to presenting their lives in different art forms.


                          Funding: HKBU Start-up Grant (Tier 1)


Todorova, Marija. forthcoming. "Lives in Translation: Listening to the Voices of Asylum Seekers in Hong Kong." In Field Research on Translation and Interpreting, edited by Hanna Risku, Regina Rogl and Daniela Schlager. John Benjamins. 

Todorova, Marija. Forthcoming. "Living in Limbo: Translation in Hong Kong Narratives of Asylum in the Digital Space." In The Routledge Handbook of Translation and Migration, edited by Brigid Maher, Loredana Polezzi and Rita Wilson. Routledge. 


This volume is structured around interpreter training in different contexts, from military operations and international tribunals to asylum-seeking and refugees, humanitarian and human rights missions. Chapters are authored by experts from around the world with a range of different profiles: military personnel, scholars, the staff of international organizations, and representatives from refugee and asylum seeker-assisting institutions.

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 Ruiz Rosendo, Lucia and Marija Todorova (eds.). 2023. Interpreter Training in Conflict and Post-Conflict Scenarios. London: Routledge.

Ruiz RosendoLucia and Marija Todorova. 2023. "Introduction." In Lucia Ruiz Rosendo and Marija Todorova (eds.), Interpreter Training in Conflict and Post-Conflict Scenarios. London: Routledge

Tedjouong, Ebenezer and Marija Todorova. 2023. "Training needs of interpreters in the refugee crisis in Africa." In Lucia Ruiz Rosendo and Marija Todorova (eds.), Interpreter Training in Conflict and Post-Conflict Scenarios. London: Routledge

Book Talk: Interpreter Training in Conflict and Post-conflict Scenarios; Marija Todorova (Speaker), Lucia Ruiz Rosendo (Speaker), Jesús Baigorri-Jalón (Speaker), and Jun PAN (Moderator), Hong Kong Baptist University Library, 26 Apr 2023. Photos and video are available here


Ran Yi (2023) Interpreter training in conflict and post-conflict scenarios, Peacebuilding, 11(3), 318-320. DOI: 10.1080/21647259.2023.2187991


Based on three published graphic novels based on refugee life stories and interviews with authors/illustrators, we hope to initiate a discussion about the need for rehumanising crises through personal narratives. Translation has been understood here in its most general term as interlingual but also intersemiotic and intercultural practice. 

Todorova, Marija and Zoran Poposki. 2022. "Rehumanizing the Refugee Crisis." In Federico Federici and Sharon O'Brien (eds.) Translating Crises. London: Bloomsbury Academics.

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Todorova, Marija. 2023. "Life Stories in Translation: Community Translators as Cultural Mediators." In Community Translation : Research and Practice, edited by Katarzyna Stachowiak – Szymczak, Erika Gonzalez, and Despina Amanatidou. Routledge. 


This volume contains 14 contributions focusing on the role of interpreters in conflict-related scenarios. They present unique examples from conflicts in the Middle East, Asia, the Sahel, and Latin America. The book is divided into two parts: Interpreting for the military and Humanitarian interpreting. 

Todorova, Marija and Lucia Ruiz Rosendo (eds.). 2021. Interpreting Conflict: A Comparative Framework. Cham: Palgrave Macmillan.

Todorova, Marija. 2021. "Interpreting for Refugees in Hong Kong." In Marija Todorova and Lucia Ruiz Rosendo (eds.), Interpreting Conflict: A Comparative Framework. Cham: Palgrave Macmillan. 

Todorova, Marija. 2021. "Pressing Issues and Future Directions for Interpreting in Conflict Zones." In Marija Todorova and Lucia Ruiz Rosendo (eds.), Interpreting Conflict: A Comparative Framework. Cham: Palgrave Macmillan. 

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Book Talk: Interpreting Conflict: a Comparative Framework, Marija Todorova (Speaker) & Lucia Ruiz Rosendo (Speaker), Hong Kong Baptist University Library, 29 Oct 2021.  Photos and video are available here


Baigorri Jalón, J. 2022. Languages as Weapons. Translation Matters 14(1), 164-167.

Kelly Pasmatzi, 2022. New Voices in Translation Studies, Issue 27, 160-165.

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The article will look at the different modes of work for interpreters for refugees in emergency situations, especially in three settings: interpreters as quasi-mediators, shuttle interpreters, and as agents for empowering the vulnerable. 

Todorova, Marija. 2020. “Interpreting for refugees: Lessons learned from the field.” In Eva Ng and Ineke Crezee (eds.), Interpreting in Legal and Healthcare Settings, London/Amsterdam/New York: John Benjamins.

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Todorova, Marija. 2017. "Interpreting at the Border: Shuttle Interpreting for the UNHCR." CLINA 3(2), 115-127.

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Todorova, Marija. 2019. "Interpreting for Refugees: Empathy and Activism." In Federiko Federici and Christophe Declercq (eds.) Intercultural Crisis Communication: Translation, Interpreting and Languages in Local Crises. London: Bloomsbury Academics.


Todorova, Marija. 2022. "Translating refugee culinary cultures: Hong Kong’s narratives of integration." Translation and Interpreting Studies 17(1), 88-110.

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Todorova, Marija. 2014. “Interpreting Conflict: Memories of an Interpreter”. In Kaindl, Klaus & Spitzl, Karlheinz (eds.) Transfiction: Research into the Realities of Translation fiction. London/Amsterdam/New York: John Benjamins, pp. 221-232.

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Todorova, Marija. 2016. “Interpreting Conflict Mediation in Kosovo and Macedonia” in Linguistica Antverpiensia 15, eds. Lucía Ruiz Rosendo and Clementina Persaud, 153-166.

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