The Disco Stick Problem

A fascinating piece on how sign language interpreters translate Lady Gaga and Bon Jovi into ASL:


Lady Gaga's "Love Game" is metaphorical, but exactly how metaphorical is it? Is the tone coy? Callous? Flirty? Dirty? . . . She has asked her interpreter friends how they would handle what shall now be referred to as the Disco Stick Problem. "One suggested I do this," Ison says - mimicking an aggressive hip thrust. But that solution seemed more vulgar than the playful lyrics implied. All of this would be easier if she knew more about her audience - how well they spoke American Sign Language, how well they spoke Gaga - but interpreters at performing arts gigs rarely know their audiences until they arrive at the show.

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