„Kaiser, König, Edelmann, Bürger, Bauer, Bettelmann“ [Emperor, king, nobleman, bourgeois, peasant, beggar] is a well-known counting rhyme for children that runs through my head from time to time when I interpret for people from very different contexts. The rhyme was once meant to emphasise the differences of the classical society of estates, but it reminds me of the range of people I deal with in my work. Be it accompanying an international delegation or interpreting for a convicted offender.
It is part of my professional ethos to transmit content indiscriminately and without regard to the person, without judging or interfering in communication. The social status of my counterpart plays no role in my work. My interpretation is also not affected by ideological or political views.
In times of growing polarisation of discourse, however, neutrality sometimes becomes a tightrope walk. For this, a high degree of restraint and tolerance is important in order to preserve freedom of opinion and speech. However, in exceptional cases, I reserve the right to reject from the outset assignments that are not compatible with my values. Open discourse without prohibitions of speech is important to me - as is respectful interaction with one another.