Woman Translates Eminem's "Lose Yourself" Into American Sign Language, And She Is Mesmerizing To Watch — VIDEO
I've often said that if I could have any super power, it would be the ability to speak any language fluently. Honestly? I secretly feel that if I concentrated just a little harder when I hear other people speaking, I could figure it all out on my own (#glasshalffull #superoptimism). Maybe it's just my intense FOMO kicking in when I hear people having conversations in languages I don't speak, but I desperately wish I could be a polyglot. So I'm sure you can imagine that when I saw this video of a woman translating Eminem's "Lose Yourself" into ASL, my FOMO was through the damn roof.
So aside from being able to sign the alphabet in American Sign Language (ASL)—I taught myself after seeing it printed on a tray cover at a McDonald's when I was a kid, because my polyglot dreams started young—I know next to nothing about the language, so I will confess that I cannot check Shelby Mitchusson's work. But one way or the other it looks really damn cool! I feel like it's actually an amazing study in the art of translation in general and brings up issues translators deal (and often struggle) with all the time. When you're going from one language to another, do you go for exact word-for-word translation? (Mitchusson doesn't do that here because that's not typical of the syntax or grammar of ASL, and because if she did it would get exhausting.) Do you try to capture the spirit and tone more than precision? What aspects of the original text do you hold on to? Which do you let go?
Check out the full video below!
In addition to making you ponder the deeper issues of translation, this video will send you into a rabbit hole of ASL song translation videos. Like, legit, what day is today? I was just going to watch one more and now it's dark out and I have a Rip Van Winkle beard...