Greatest Women in Translation: Giselle Chaumien

Difficult texts are one reason I often say that translation is a humbling profession. The other reason is that one comes into contact with translators such as Giselle Chaumien. I found this long interview fascinating.

Carol's Adventures in Translation


Welcome back to our interview series Greatest Women in Translation! This month the interview is a bit later than usual because yesterday was a local holiday here, so I took the day off. 😉

Please welcome this month’s Greatest Woman in Translation, Giselle Chaumien.

Welcome, Giselle!


1.Your mother is German and your father is French. Was your upbringing bilingual at home? If so, how was the experience?

Yes, we spoke both languages at home – with our dogs as well, who understood the commands in both languages. I believe that bilingual upbringing works well only when both parents speak both languages well and use them with the family. Time and again we hear or read that it’s difficult for children, but I can’t confirm that for me and my siblings. My mother told me that we spoke a mishmash of both languages in our first few years, but…

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