A post I wrote in February was discovered by l’AIIC (Professional Conference Interpreters Worldwide) and linked to from their Language in the News section:
Observing communication dynamics at the EP
“The technical orchestration of twenty-three languages performed by Members of the European Parliament and the cadre of Simultaneous Interpreters assigned to generate spontaneous comprehension is nearly seamless.” Read the whole piece at Reflexivity.
Now, a few months and several observations later, my initial impressions still ring true. The technology enables parallel monolingualisms, the illusion of using the same, shared language. When Members codeswitch among different languages, this is also experienced and understood as a common, shared form of communication. The differences are blended into a new homogenous social construction.