Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Glossary (Port.<-> Eng.): Migration Tribunal, Issues

This glossary is provided to you by the SPTIA (Syndicate of Professional Translators and Interpreters of Australia) as a courtesy. Please give back to this institution: You may, for instance, attend one of their courses ( 

RefoulementDespachar (pessoa) para um outro país
Stateless personsPessoas sem nacionalidade/ cidadania
Working dayDia comercial/de trabalho
Remit (an application)
Reviewable (decision)
Passível de revisão
Ministerial discretion
Discreção ministerial
Expert opinionOpinião de perito/pericial
Deputy Minister
Ministro substituto
Adjourn (the hearing)Adiar
Burden of proof
Ônus da prova
Complementary protection
Proteção complementar
Responsável legal

Saturday, 19 September 2015

It Cannot Get Any Dirtier than This!

Warning: The words you are about to see are really really really dirty and belong to the vocabulary of those who are really really really impolite. They, however, do appear with frequency in interpreting sessions, so that it might be interesting to compile such a list. Please do not continue reading if there is any chance this will offend you. Please let us know if exhibiting these words here is a crime/offence as well because we have no idea. Cunt and fuck, for instance, do appear in the dictionary, so that we assume that is not illegal. As another point, the AUSIT code tells us to interpret things exactly as they are, so that we also have to get used to this not to blush during an assignment or feel inhibited in any sense. 

This glossary is provided to you by the SPTIA (Syndicate of Professional Translators and Interpreters of Australia) as a courtesy. Please give back to this institution: You may, for instance, attend one of their courses ( 

Mother fucker
Fodedor de mãe (never used there. They would probably say Son of a Bitch instead)
Son of a bitchFilho(a) da puta
Merda (the literal meaning would be foda, but it is never used in the sense those who speak English use Fuck)
Merda/bosta (bosta is more for people from the South of Brazil and merda is more for the people from RJ/SP)
It is such a shit
É uma merda danada (more literal translation)/É foda
I am screwed
Fodeu (RJ)/Me ferrei (South of Brazil)/Tô fodido (RJ, closest in literal translation)
He shits everything
Ele ferra com tudo (South)/Ele só faz merda (RJ/SP)
Fuck youVai se foder (RJ/SP)
Cadela (South)/Piranha (SP/RJ)/Vagabunda (SP)
Don't mess up with meNão me provoca
Get lost 
Vai para a puta que o pariu (RJ/SP, bad names and low thing)/Desaparece da minha frente (South)
Fucked in the head
Tem a cabeça cheia de merda (RJ/SP)/bosta (South)/Tem a cabeça toda fodida (more literal)
Xoxota (RJ), pexereca (none of them has an offensive sense, however. This is another gap case. These words simply denote the female genitalia in the popular expressions of Brazil), vaca (this is from RJ and has a very similar meaning, it is said to a woman we think is a bitch, a prostitute, a monster, and etc. Literally, it means cow), boceta (more offensive name for the female genitalia)
You are a dickhead
Você só pensa em sexo (no dirty words, literally you only think of sex. Gap case)
Fodedor (the same as fucker, gap case)
His was tiny (dick)O pinto dele era pequenino
He was really big (dick)O pinto dele era enorme
He's such a dick 
Ele é um piranho (rarely seen in their expression)

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

A Note on Dear

Unfortunately, mistakes in translation can indeed cause problems of the size of a war and can bring really bad consequences to individuals: From losing their profession to losing their human rights in first world democracy.

For those who don't give value to the lexicon and to really good translators, and the really good translators would be those to worry the most about accuracy, here is a great lesson.

Basically, Brazil told us, and that was at least during our 9 years plus something of formal studies on the English language, that Dear was used in formal contexts to show politeness and respect. The equivalent that they gave us was Cara or Caro, which are used in formal correspondence in Brazil, basically business correspondence or when we want to impose maximum respect, maximum distance, between that who writes and that who reads, but this distance has no connection to any title, so that it is not because they are PhDs or presidents, but because they are people and we want them to understand it is all, or it all should be, extremely formal and distant.

As an example of the word in context, we have 

Por isso, caro leitor, não se engane

This is found on extract. It is a good example to show the difference in sense because this is the most common application of the word in the Portuguese language and this is a context of contact with an unknown reader (because of this, dear reader, do not be mistaken). 

It is here that we can see that the Australian person could easily read this sentence and think that we are calling the reader darling or treating them as someone that we really respect. Culturally, however, the sense is way another: We try to produce a polite thing and, at the same time, make it clear that we have no personal attachment, like we really have no attachment, of any sort, to the person. It is a way of expressing obligation to communicate, perhaps because we ourselves feel obliged to do it, but, at the same time, make it clear that there is nothing personal to it, so that this is definitely a completely different sense of that intended by the English language. Because in some contexts it will coincide with the English sense, however, they have generalized its meaning to force the equivalency. We have addressed this issue when we wrote about partial gaps (Logical Divergence).

Nowadays, The Free Dictionary tells us that dear in the just-given sense is obsolete. They say therefore that in the distant past it was a synonym for politeness and respect (the senses they bring are noble and worthy), but now it is something to do with loved and cherished, precious, and stuff like that. 

A Brazilian woman relying on such an equivocated couple of equivalents, and we can now tell that Dear was never the equivalent to Cara or Caro, thanks to the Free Dictionary, could, for instance, lose a claim about harassment because all the time she was being formal in her communications with her boss or supervisor, but everyone else thought that she was calling him Darling. 

That is when we realize that people who do not give value to translation and interpretation can only be insane. 

See (dictionary):

      dear 1

          adj. dear·erdear·est
a. Loved and cherished: my dearest friend.
b. Greatly valued; precious: lost everything dear to them.
2. Highly esteemed or regarded. Used in direct address, especially in salutations: Dear Lee Dawson.
a. High-priced; expensive.
b. Charging high prices.
4. Earnest; ardent: "This good man was a dear lover and constant practicer of angling" (Izaak Walton).
5. Obsolete Noble; worthy.
6. Heartfelt: It is my dearest wish.
1. person who is greatly loved. Often used as a form of address.
2. An endearing, lovable, or kind person: What a dear she is!

Used as a polite exclamation, chiefly of surprise or distress: oh dear; dear me.

[Middle English derefrom Old English dēore.]

dear′ly adv.

dear′ness n.

dear 2

Severe; grievous; sore: our dearest need.

[Middle English derefrom Old English dēor.]

American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. beloved; precious
2. used in conventional forms of address preceding a title or name, as in Dear Sir or my dear Mr Smith
3. (foll by: toimportant; close: wish dear to her heart.
a. highly priced
b. charging high prices
5. appealing or pretty: what a dear little ring!.
6. for dear life urgently or with extreme vigour or desperation

7. used in exclamations of surprise or dismay, such as Oh dear! and dear me!

8. (often used in direct addresssomeone regarded with affection and tenderness; darling

9. dearly: his errors have cost him dear.

[Old English dēore; related to Old Norse dӯrr]
ˈdearness n
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003