Reglindis De Ridder: Audiovisual Translation and Sociolinguistics: Bridging theory and practice


Smaller language areas, in general, engage in more translation activity than major language areas do. Because of the higher exposure to translations in such language areas, linguistic research into translated texts is important. In the Dutch, but also the Scandinavian language areas, subtitles, in particular, have become significant disseminators of the linguistic standard and, as a result, can be an underestimated language-planning tool in the further development of the language.

This presentation discusses the status of Belgian Dutch in the pluricentric Dutch language area by shedding more light on the language policy and practice of the Public Service Broadcaster in Dutch-speaking Belgium: VRT. VRT has always played an important language-planning role in Belgium. A turning point in VRT’s history was 1998 when, on the one hand, it officially acknowledged the very existence of its own standard variety Belgian Dutch, and on the other, it announced that it would no longer adhere to the Netherlandic Dutch standard. To what extent this policy change is also reflected in its subtitle output will be discussed in this presentation.

About Reglindis De Ridder

After obtaining a master in Translation Studies in my hometown Brussels, I decided to specialise in subtitling and enrolled on a second master in Screen Translation in Sheffield. In the UK, I also grew fascinated with the status of national varieties in pluricentric language areas and the role of translators in minority and smaller or 'minoritised' language areas. In 2011, I embarked on a PhD in Ireland to delve more deeply into this matter. Currently, I am pursuing a postdoc at the Institutionen för slaviska och baltiska språk, finska, nederländska och tyska investigating Dutch audiovisual translation for Belgian children.