Lecture: “Trial by Pandemic: Linguistic justice and access to health-related multilingual communication in Canada”
Speaker: María Sierra Córdoba Serrano (McGill University, Canada) Date: 1 June Time: 15:00-16:30 (UK time) Location: Online
In an officially bilingual (and unofficially multilingual) country such as Canada, concerns over language are omnipresent in public discourse. And yet, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has shown that when public safety and security are at stake, language is relegated to the sidelines.
Drawing on Federici and O’Brien (2019), O’Brien et al. (2021), and Bowen (2021), translation in crisis settings will be framed as risk communication, an important component of risk management that influences how people perceive risk, which in turn influences how they prepare for and respond to crises. More broadly, we would like to demonstrate that language diversity is not merely a form of cultural richness in Canada; it needs to be studied in greater depth through official data collection and framed as a risk management issue that affects not only specific vulnerable populations, but Canadian society at large.