Translator of the month: Joanna Mirek

Article published on March 3, 2014
Article published on March 3, 2014

Fast, high-quality and reactive – these three words can describe our translator of the month, Joanna Mirek. It turns out that apart from being fond of foreign languages, she also adores peking duck and splendour of the former Austro-Hungarian dual monarchy. As we all know, it's important to know such things about the people you work with.

Describe yourself in three words.

Sensible. Sensitive. Perfectionist.

What do you do in your life as profession?

I am a student of Applied Linguistics (German and English) at Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin, Poland. I translate, learn new foreign languages and try to upgrade my skills and qualifications, as well as to deepen and develop my personal interests.

What is your favourite dish?

Peking duck and sushi.

What is your favourite European nationality?

Each and every single nationality is extraordinary and indisputably deserves respect, yet it is my homeland, Poland, that has a very special place in my heart.

The first article/translation for Ca­fe­ba­bel?

This article was entitled “My Słowianie” (“We are Slavic”) and I translated it from German into Polish. It referred to a Polish song under the same title, which was once extremely popular. Being impressed with the fact that this song was noticed beyond Polish borders, I decided to translate this article as the first one. 

The weirdest dream you have ever had?

I tend to have lots of bizarre dreams. In one of them I opened my fridge and discovered, to my astonishment, a small fish tank with a tiny bunny swimming inside it!

What does Cafebabel mean to you? In one single word.

One word certainly would not be sufficient to describe Cafebabel! It is a remarkable magazine, which touches upon various questions related to European countries, including those which arouse controversy. It is a place, where I am given an unique opportunity to develop and upgrade my translation skills. Furthermore, reading absorbing articles broadens my mind, as I can learn a lot about realities in a number of European countries, which are presented from different angles. 

Pick up one preferred section, article and author of Cafebabel!

My favourite columns are indisputably “Culture”, owing to the fact that I am interested in broadly defined art, music and cinema, alongside “Society”, as it portrays a wide variety of extremely interesting topics.

My favourite article is at the same time the very first one that I read on Cafebabel. It is entitled The Moomins are Finland’s best ambassadors.” The Moomins was my all-time favourite cartoon when I was a child. Thus, I still feel deeply attached to it. I adore it and will certainly watch it over and over again, as I always considered it a wonderful source of wisdom. I wish I had translated this article into Polish…

So far, I have enjoyed the most the articles written by Jasper Finkeldey, seeing that he paints an interesting picture of current affairs in Germany, which is vital to me for the sake of my studies. However, with respect to the fact that I am interested in contemporary trends in cinema, I really appreciated the articles written by Daniel Thatch, who wrote a lot about the Film Festival Berlinale. 

The silliest thing you have ever done in your life?

I mistook my future teacher for a class mate at the beginning of the school year…

The best place in Europe you have visited so far?

Wrocław – a truly magical city, just as if it were taken straight out of a fairy tale book. I am curious about the world and willing to explore it. I am intent on visiting many incredible places in Europe, as there is a multitude of them here.

Any European city you would like to visit?

The imperial Vienna and Budapest, both located on the Danube river, both boasting an extraordinary ambience, along with the magnificent splendour and glory of the former Austro-Hungarian dual monarchy. Another must-see is the Bavarian castle Neuschwanstein in Germany. I am dying to sightsee these places one day!

What does Europe mean to you?

Europe is a cultural mosaic of various countries and nationalities, encompassing an incredible cultural richness. The old continent. Our roots. Pretty much everything we know stems from here – starting from our history, through our entire cultural heritage, art, music, literature, philosophy, ending up with science. And the heart of Europe is located precisely in Poland. 

Get to know Joanna better on her profile.