I worked with archive documents for the first time whilst researching my PhD in Spanish. Since 2018, I have been heavily involved in translating documents relating to Dutch wartime experiences.
“Hilde’s experience and expert linguistic skills have transformed and brought to life the experiences of my father’s escape…The attention to detail and care taken have been first class.”
For the Institut für Zeitgeschichte, Germany, I have translated Dutch archive material relating to the lives of Dutch Jews during the Second World War. The importance of this project was recognised by ITI when I received a special commendation in the Class “Best Performance on an assignment – translation” at their 2020 Awards ceremony.
More recently, I have been working on personal documents and a substantial memoir of Andries Zwaan, a Dutch escapee during the Second World War, on behalf of his son.
Both these projects have involved working with handwritten and typed documents, which use a style and breadth of vocabulary no longer occurring in contemporary Dutch. This has resulted in some interesting linguistic challenges, as I have to find ways to translate antiquated expressions in a contextually appropriate manner.
Participating in these projects is a humbling experience, as I am giving a voice to those who can no longer speak for themselves.