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Abstract

This article describes interpreting between deaf refugees and hearing professionals in community settings, with a focus on cooperation. Extensive communication barriers characterize these situations, as deaf interlocutors and interpreters do not share languages. The situations require interpreters with the ability to communicate visually and use unconventional forms of communication, not depending solely on formalized signed languages when interpreting. Based on interviews with signed language interpreters in qualitative focus groups, this article shows how interpreters in these situations convey meaning between the interlocutors, and how establishing cooperation with the hearing interlocutor is a coping strategy in that regard. The article also describes how cooperation between interpreters can unfold in situations with significant communication barriers.

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