Out of the Black Box: Investigating the Experiential Impact of Psychotherapy with Refugees on Interpreters

Prof Doc Thesis

Di Braccio, M. 2020. Out of the Black Box: Investigating the Experiential Impact of Psychotherapy with Refugees on Interpreters. Prof Doc Thesis University of East London School of Psychology https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.889w3
AuthorsDi Braccio, M.
TypeProf Doc Thesis

Language interpreters are pivotal in ensuring equal access to psychological therapy for refugees and asylum seekers in the United Kingdom. However, historical conceptualisations of interpreters as ‘invisible’ in therapy appear to have contributed to a lack of research in this setting. The current study sets out to explore interpreters’ experiences of therapy with refugees and the professional support they need in this setting. Eleven interpreters participated in semi-structured interviews, which were then analysed using Thematic Analysis.
Three overarching themes were identified: What is my Role?; Emotionally Connected vs Detached; and Current Context vs Aspiration. Results highlight participants’ experiences of an ambiguous and complex role and of a unique setting that poses technical and emotional challenges; interpreters' conceptualisation of their preferred support; the experienced precarity of an unregulated and poorly recognised profession; and the personal growth being an interpreter brings about.
This study has clinical and policy implications, such as organisations’ obligations to offer specialised, multi-modal support to interpreters and the urgency of granting interpreting protection of title.

KeywordsInterpreters; impact; experiences; support; psychotherapy; refugees; asylum seekers
PublisherUniversity of East London
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.889w3
File Access Level
Publication dates
Online01 Jun 2020
Publication process dates
SubmittedJun 2020
Deposited23 Oct 2020
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License: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0
File access level: Anyone

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