Rhetorical dissonance of unsynchronized voices: Issues of voice-over in news broadcasts

Ali Darwish, Pilar Orero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


© Fédération des Traducteurs (fit) Revue Babel. Voice-over as an audiovisual translation modality has traditionally been described for its rendering of the truth or its faithfulness. The manipulation and deviation from the original text through translation has already been the object of study in documentaries. This paper looks at the translation of TV news through voice-over. Technical and content infidelities are rendering the broadcast actualities into sexed up copies of the original, which for all intents and purposes are in sheer contravention of what translation is for as a faithful reproduction of the original and of objective and factual news reporting. The effects of the translator's visibility in news voice-over is re-examined and the physical presence of the translator/voice talent is analyzed. This paper argues that the visibility of the translator in this instance pushes the boundaries of mediation beyond mere technicalities towards a sociopolitical sphere of reasoning and rationality by editorial policy makers. The paper also argues that synchronicity of voice-overs stemming from the rhetorical features of the voice-over styles of delivery and the idiosyncrasies of the voices creates dissonance and renders the original message with a degree of infelicities that undermine the long-celebrated standards of objectivity and neutrality. Consequently, this paper underscores the invisibility of the translator in this mode of translation mediation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-144
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Audiovisual translation
  • Dubbing
  • News translation
  • Revoicing
  • Subtitling
  • Translation mediation
  • Voice acting
  • Voice-over


Dive into the research topics of 'Rhetorical dissonance of unsynchronized voices: Issues of voice-over in news broadcasts'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this