As interpreters and translators, we are experts in multicultural matters!
Interpreters and translators not only mediate between languages, they catalyse and transcend cultural codes and contents. This competence is supplemented by professional expertise and by the understanding of numerous topics. They can only be masters of their trade if they are competent in these three areas.
Their acquisition of such competence is aided by many years of time spent in other cultures and societies as well as professional routine. Good interpreters and translators are always familiar with the specific characteristics of various cultures. This is the only way that they can guarantee they will be able to find the equivalent codes of the target language and target culture when interpreting or translating verbal or written communications.
Just one example: Germans are familiar with the ICE as a high speed train. Travellers between London, Brussels and Paris know the Eurostar; French people know the TGV, Spaniards know the Velocidad and the British know the HST. While the Ukrainian national railway company, Ukrzalisnytsia, likewise offers high speed trains on some routes, but in order to do justice with the reality of Ukrainian transport a businessman there would go by plane or rent a car; on the other hand, a private individual would travel by a so-called “Marshrutka”, one of the omnipresent, comfortable minibuses, which replace trains, private cars and taxis on many routes.