Approach in Action

Tertulia’s approach to helping clients share their stories and messages in multiple languages is grounded in the understanding that a language cannot be isolated from the community of people that speak it. I consider my work as a multilingual wordsmith to be a vocation and a craft, and I strive to work in a culturally intelligent, creative, curious, collaborative, and ethical manner. Furthermore, three fundamental principles guide me when I create Spanish-language materials and content for a US-based audience.

Here are two examples of how Tertulia has put this approach into action:

Adaptation of a foster parent recruitment brochure from English to Spanish to include key explanatory information, anticipate additional questions, and ensure the viability of the brochure’s call to action with the intended audience in mind.

CLIENT: A nonprofit coalition of foster care agencies in Michigan
MATERIAL: A foster parent recruitment brochure (print)
INTENDED AUDIENCE: Spanish-speaking adults residing in the county served by the coalition
SPECIAL CONSIDERATIONS: A real need to effectively reach eligible Spanish-speaking adults willing and able to take in children who speak only Spanish
TEAM: Emily Hunsberger of Tertulia, with editing help from Selene Lacayo

Production of an audio story about Kitchen Spanish (Spanish spoken in restaurant kitchens in the US) that avoids dubbing over interview clips in Spanish and allows bilingual characters in the story to express themselves in both languages, with both the intended audience and the people appearing in the story in mind.

CLIENT: Racist Sandwich podcast
MATERIAL: A reported story about “Kitchen Spanish” (audio)
INTENDED AUDIENCE: Racist Sandwich listeners (assumed to be majority English-dominant) as well as those who appear in the story (both Spanish- and English-dominant and bilingual)
SPECIAL CONSIDERATIONS: A desire for the story’s format to reflect its content, i.e. both show and be a space where Spanish and Spanish speakers can shirk their minoritized status in US society
TEAM: Emily Hunsberger of Tertulia and Stephanie Kuo of Racist Sandwich