The end of the Cold War and the coming of globalization have influenced the development of international relations as a field of study (Salomon, 2002), and it was fostered by the need of establishing peace, goodwill and friendship between nations.

However, many people agree that international relations is an old concept which appeared around the 15th century with the creation of ships and the new tendency of exploring the world. This implied the interaction with other groups of people, habits and cultures; therefore, there was a need for creating organizations and corporations ‘to establish trade agreements and to discuss issues of mutual concern’ (Smith, 2010, pa. 2).

Nowadays, international relations refers to ‘the collective interactions of the international community, which includes individual nations and states, inter-governmental organizations such as the United Nations, non-governmental organizations like Doctors Without Borders, multinational corporations, and so forth’ (pa. 1).

However, the study of international relations is far more complex than the analysis of the political relationship among different countries. It implies an interdisciplinary vision of international affairs which is influenced by historical, sociological, political, economical and legal issues (Hormazábal and Carreño, 2006). In addition, Celestino del Arenal (1994) claims that international laws and diplomatic history have created the starting point for the development of this discipline.

According to Fernández-Miranda (n/d), the organizations that are in charge of keeping peace among countries must have translators working for them representing the countries of the language in which they translate to. In this way, translators become like a symbol of equity and of no discrimination. Thus, small countries that have translators representing them in these international organizations feel they are part of the world and that they have a voice in the global politics and economy.

Senez (1991) claims that while international relations grew as a discipline, translation became a more necessary tool for achieving its purpose, which brought changes in the translation field. In the first place, there was a great number of documents that needed to be translated. In addition, new areas of translation studies appeared, such as simultaneous interpreting, dubbing, subtitling, technical translation, which implied a substantial change in accordance with the types of text these areas deal with. As a result, the business of translation needed to create a new translator’s profile, narrowing specialization and developing different types of competence.

Therefore, translation became a vital part of the actual society, and the differences between the definition of translator and interpreter now became clear. Each group of professionals organized national and international associations to promote their own interests, enabling the creation of schools of translation and interpreting around the world.


Retrieved from my Thesis: THE IDEAL PROFILE OF A TRANSLATOR/INTERPRETER WORKING IN INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS – Presented at River Plate Adventist University in 2010.

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