What's the story: a narrative overview of community interpreting in mental health care in Ireland
Zimányi, Krisztina (2010) What's the story: a narrative overview of community interpreting in mental health care in Ireland. PhD thesis, Dublin City University.
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Interpreting in mental health care is generally considered a consensual activity, whereby all the participants of the interpreter-mediated encounter – the service user client, the service provider mental health professional and the interpreter – are present for the same purpose: successful diagnosis and therapy. Based on this assumption, the current study aims to investigate to what extent narratives in interpreter-mediated mental health care in Ireland are consensually co-constructed at three different organisational levels: (1) the level of stories recounted during the interpreted therapeutic sessions; (2) the level of discourse between the participants of these interpreter-mediated meetings; (3) the metanarrative level of mental health interpreting service provision. The investigation is based on thematic, structural and dialogic narrative analytical methods carried out on data collected during narrative interviews with mental health professionals who have worked with interpreters and interpreters who have experience working in mental health settings. The findings
suggest that mental health interpreting is not an obviously consensual activity, and that none of the levels of narrative explored show an even distribution of consensual
co-constructive activities. Furthermore, the study proposes that consensual and conflictual narratives may be more helpful in classifying subfields of Community
Interpreting than the traditional taxonomies which organise subfields into categories depending on the environment or setting in which they take place.
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