EUVOS. Intangible Cultural Heritage. For an European Programme for Subtitling in Non-Hegemonic Languages
The European Union and its Member States have made numerous pledges regarding the unyielding and non-negotiable preservation and fostering of the cultural and linguistic diversity in Europe and the value of Film as meeting point for technological innovation, culture and economy.
The European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages (ECRML), issued on 25th June 1992 as a Convention by the Council of Europe –and signed on 5th November 1992 by eleven Member States, including Spain-, commits the signatories explicitly (art. 12b) to “to foster the different means of access in other languages to works produced in regional or minority languages by aiding and developing translation, dubbing, post-synchronisation and subtitling activities”.
Among the actions to preserve the Intanglible Cultural Heritage in Europe, the priorities are those geared towards fostering the subtitling of audiovisual content. However, the unequivocal formal commitment derived from the Conventions –at a European, national and regional level- is materialized in the implementation of random, fragmented and contingent measures, which, in general, lead to a systemic lack of results.
The EU-VOS. Patrimonio Cultural Inmaterial. Para un programa europeo de sutitulado en lenguas no hegemónicas project (EU-VOS. Intangible Cultural Heritage. for a European programme of subtitling in non-hegemonic languages) aims, thus, to reveal in a determined and rigorous manner the ins and outs of the retrospective, contemporary and prospective situation of subtitling in the European sphere. The aim is to propose a proactive programme of measures to take into account in a harmonic subtitling policy for the audiovisual and cinematographic production in non-hegemonic European languages.
Being aware of the deep-rooted institutional and professional resistance to academic knowledge in subtitling –favouring instead economic indicators that simplify the complexity of the so-called creative industries-, our aim is to bring about a change of mindset creating spaces for exchange and reflection for the main stakeholders involved: academics, institutional and professional representatives. This is a change of perspective that can have an impact on both the access and transnational mobility of films made in non-hegemonic languages and the consideration of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in Europe itself.
To this end, we set out to make geographical references to the current state of European subtitling in non-hegemonic languages by means of a) a comparative mapping of public policies and sectorial practices, b) a taxonomy of the main challenges and/or motivations in the access to original versions, c) singling out the most innovative experiences at a technological and creative level which, on the basis of the quality of the subtitles and their integration in the film, allow to use the contributions to universal design applied to media access, the contributions to partial subtitling, and creative subtitling.
As evidence of the expectations raised at institutional and industrial level and of the immediate applicability of its results, the project is supported by a significant amount of academic, institutional and professional entities, organisations and associations.
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