Avid readers of Jost Zetzsche’s Tool Box Journal already know that Zetzsche is gifted with great technical insight and the skills to write about trends and developments in the language industry in an accessible way. A selection of his publications is bundled in Translation Matters. now, a book well worth reading.
Zetzsche is a true lover of language and translation. If that does not become clear from all his publications, the title of his anthology at least hints at it. For the book he chose the ambiguous title Translation Matters., which already offers food for thought. The cover is simply hilarious, showing a real-world example of the flaws in Google Translate. For those who think that it is only a joke, give it a try here or check the screenshots below.
Carefully crafted book
Now to the content of the book. Translation Matters. contains 13 chapters with a selection of articles which were published in his infamous The Translator’s Tool Box, The ATA Chronicle, the Tool Box Journal, and elsewhere. The articles are thematically arranged in chapters on becoming a translator, machine translation, risks of translation technology, and more. All these articles make it clear that Zetzsche in the past years has published much about his profession and our industry in several different media. While the content and audience might have been different for each publication, collected together in the book they show a unity, which makes the anthology seem like a carefully crafted book.
However, it is mainly the articles themselves that make Translation Matters. a great book. Zetzsche is a skilled author, combining humour with facts and sometimes adding some personal notes, adding some extra personality to his publications. Each page makes it clear that he knows what he is talking about. While readers won’t necessarily agree with all his views, they can certainly learn more about many subjects – especially the more technical aspects of translation, such as technology. Thanks to the links to actual events, such as the Olympics, he is able to catch our attention in an accessible way, but never ends in a dull way. That makes Translation Matters. a great read for every translator and project manager, a book worth reading and also to reflect on the content.