INTERPRETING: Sociolinguistic perspectives on challenges in interpreting encounters in the Danish public sector

Contemporary societies are overwhelmingly characterized by various types of linguistic and cultural diversity. One of the consequences of such societal complexity is an increasing need for interpreting in institutional encounters.

 "The Courtroom: An illustration of the partipants' position in the room of many doors" by Paulina Bala.

In Denmark interpreting in the public sector represents a significant cost. Approximately 305 million DKK was spent on interpreting services in the legal, asylum and health-care sectors in 2016 (Rigsrevisionen 2018:5), and it is certainly important that interpreter mediated meetings work as well as possible. From an academic perspective, the social encounters in which interpreting services are used also provide a window into important social and linguistic processes, and interpreting encounters are therefore vital to explore for the socially engaged science of language.







  • Højland, Line & Kirilova, Marta (In press, 2022). Tolkning og fortolkning – forståelse og betydningsformidling i terapisamtaler med tolk I: Tidsskrift for Psykoterapi. 2022/1

  • Karrebæk, Martha Sif & Kirilova, Marta (2020): Neoliberal governance vs expert authority in Danish legal interpreting: Issues of social justice,

  • Karrebæk, Martha Sif & Kirilova, Marta (2021). Retssproget er dansk: Sproglige ideologier i grundlovsforhør med tolk In T. Kristiansen & A. Holmen (eds.): Sprogs status i Rigsfællesskabet 2031, s. 79-98, Københavnerstudier i tosprogethed. København: Københavns Universitet

  • Karrebæk, Martha Sif & Sørensen, Solvej Helleshøj (2021). Interpreting as creating a potential for understanding: Insights from a Danish courtroom I: International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law, s. 59-97
  • Karrebæk, Martha Sif & Højland, Line (2021). En følelse af henrettelse: Om affektive bevægelser i en terapisamtale med tolk I: Nordand – Nordisk tidsskrift for andrespråksforskning, s. 94-113

  • Karrebæk, Martha Sif & Kirilova, Marta (Accepted/In press). Chaos in court: Interpreting as a mediatized object in a state of law I: International Journal of the Sociology of Language.

  • Kirilova, Marta & Højland, Line (Accepted/In press) 'I feel it’s something that irritates her’:
    Emotions in interpreted trauma therapy sessions I: Communication & Medicine: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Healthcare, Ethics and Society.

  • Sørensen, Solvej Helleshøj & Karrebæk, Martha Sif (Accepted/In press). L’interprétation d’informations implicites – le cas de la requête de recours à la visioconférence dans les audiences préliminaires danoises I: Langage & Societe.

  • Sørensen, Solvej Helleshøj (2021): HVEM TOLKER TOLKEN FOR? - En interaktionsanalyse af tolkens gengivelser i grundlovsforhør med arabisk tolk, Københavnerstudier i tosprogethed, 82. København: Københavns Universitet, Humanistisk Fakultet




Name Title Phone E-mail
Bala, Paulina PhD Fellow +4535320566 E-mail
Karrebæk, Martha Sif Associate Professor +4535329400 E-mail
Kirilova, Marta Assistant Professor - Tenure Track +4535330329 E-mail
Sørensen, Solvej Helleshøj Research Assistant +4535330745 E-mail


Independent Research Fund Denmark

INTERPRETING has received a three-year grant (Thematic Research) by Independent Research Fund Denmark.

Project:  Interpreting in institutional interaction: Sociolinguistic challenges in Denmark as a globalized society (8091-00018B)  
Principal Investigator: Martha Sif Karrebæk
Start:  1 February 2019