CfP: Panel on Gesture in spoken and signed-to-spoken language interpreting within the IPrA (2023) conference



Gesture in spoken and signed-to-spoken language interpreting 

Date of the conference: 9-14 July 2023
Location: Brussels, Belgium (in-person event)
Panel organisers: Sílvia Gabarró-López ( and Alan Cienki (
Conference website:
Deadline for the submission of abstracts: November 1st (23:59 CET)


Meeting description

Gestures have been frequently observed in interpreted discourse, either when spoken language interpreters work in the booth and are not visible, as in (simultaneous) conference interpreting, or when they are “visible” to the audience, as in community interpreting. Sign language interpreters do not work in a booth, as they need to be visible to the audience when they interpret into the signed language. Depending on the type of service, they are also visible to the audience when interpreting into the spoken language (e.g. in liaison interpreting) or at least to the deaf/hearing signing person on stage who is being interpreted (e.g. in a conference, the interpreter sits in the first rows of the audience). Regardless of the modality of the source discourse (spoken or signed) and of whether they are seen or not, interpreters do gesture in their spoken target production.

The study of gesture and interpreting can shed light on how interpreters structure their discourse and on how their bodily actions construct meaning. This incipient interdisciplinary approach of researching interpreters’ gestures with their speech may uncover specificities of interpreting that have been overlooked so far. The findings may also have promising applications in the quality of interpreting services and interpreters’ training.

This panel aims to contribute to this incipient field of study by gathering scholars who work on gesture in interpreted discourse. Our goal is to foster the discussion and collaboration between researchers working with different language pairs and modalities. We welcome contributions in which the source language is spoken or signed, and the target language is spoken. The panel is open to any topic involving gesture in interpreting, perspectives (including both elicited and naturalistic data) and settings (conference interpreting, liaison interpreting, etc.).


Abstract submission guidelines

Abstracts should have a minimum of 250 words and a maximum of 500 words (including references). They should be submitted before November 1st (23:59 CET) using the conference website and following a two-step process:

  1. Become an IPrA member so that the system lets you submit your abstract. Access (see and pay the fee. The fee will have to be paid again in 2023, when registering for the conference (see further details).
  2. Log into fill in the information required in order to submit your abstract.

Submissions will apply for a 30-minute slot in which the talk should ideally be around 20 minutes to also allow time for questions and moving to the next talk. Do not hesitate to contact us if you have questions or need further assistance with the submission process.

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Written by Johanna