> You can find my book about the Menorcan community in Gibraltar translated into English by Brian Porro here (hardcopy and Kindle version).

The English translation of my book deserves a proper introduction.

On 22 October 2018, in the middle of the afternoon, about twenty students and listeners of the Master in Construction and Representation of Cultural Identities sat in room 1.6 of the Josep Carner building to listen to the lecture entitled ‘People of the Border: a forgotten human history’, delivered by Gibraltarian academic and author Mark G. Sanchez. At the end of the presentation, by way of thanks for the references he had made during the talk to the Menorcan community that arrived in Gibraltar in the 18th Century, I took the opportunity to personally deliver to the speaker one of the first copies of the Catalan edition of my book Els ‘minorkeens’ de Gibraltar. The following week, as it happened, I had to go to present the book in Gibraltar itself.

On 26 October, in fact, a presentation which was unique in two ways took place at The Main Guard in John Mackintosh Square, the main offices of the Gibraltar Heritage Trust, because it was the first book specifically dedicated to this little-known emigration flow in either Menorca or  Gibraltar and also, for the first time in history, of that I am certain, that a work written in Catalan was officially presented on the Rock. 

The day after this double scoop, first thing in the morning, I had a message on my mobile from Mark G. Sanchez, sent from England, which read: ‘Hello Martí, a Gibraltarian translator has contacted me regarding your book. He says he’s reading the book and he’s interested in talking to you about translating it.’ At the end of the text, he included an e-mail address with something about it which I thought I recognised from elsewhere, to which I did not hesitate to write quickly. And the answer was not long in coming … from Canterbury.

This was my first contact with Brian Porro, the translator who is responsible for the careful and demanding adaptation to English of this book and who, beyond scrupulously maintaining the meaning of each word and phrase, has undoubtedly made it much more complete than the original. During the entire process of translation and revision of the text the only distance that has existed between him and me has been the geographical one, bridged in the main thanks to digital technologies. In every other way, we have had the utmost closeness. The almost total coincidence of criteria and objectives between us has made it very easy both to understand each other when working together and to achieve the final aim of all this work: the English version of The ‘Minorkeens’ of Gibraltar.

Therefore, you will not find the name of Brian Porro – someone who has known how to bring out the best of all the peoples and nations that he carries in his blood and, above all, his heart – in the list of acknowledgements in my book because with this brief introduction I wanted to personally thank him for his huge amount of work to achieve an interest I think shared by both: assessing properly the Menorcan contribution – as, in fact, many Gibraltarians can verify by checking back on their surnames – to the current identity of the Gibraltarian.

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