Gibraltarian writer M. G. Sanchez has been invited to the University of Salamanca to speak about his books with Spanish academics and postgraduates.
The visit is being arranged by Professor Ana Maria Manzanas, a lecturer in English and American Studies at the University of Salamanca’s Departamento de Filología Inglesa. Professor Manzanas is particularly interested in American culture and transnational issues. She also specialises in literary depictions of borders and borderlands. Recent publications by Professor Manzanas include Hospitality in American Literature and Culture (Routledge 2016), Occupying Space in American Literature and Culture (Routledge 2014) and Cities, Borders, and Spaces in Intercultural American Literature and Film (Routledge 2011).
On the subject of M. G. Sanchez’s writings, the Professor recently said:
“M. G. Sanchez anatomizes one of the most obvious — if overlooked — borders in Europe. The Spanish-Gibraltarian border has been hiding in plain sight. With his distinctive hybrid voice, Sanchez’s narratives explore this unique contact zone between and among languages, cultures and world visions. Gibraltar has never been more present on the literary map.”
Professor Manzanas’s interest in M. G. Sanchez has been fostered by Sarah Abas, one of her postgraduate research students. Ms. Abas was born in Cairo and recently started a PhD focusing on Gibraltarian culture and, in particular, the novels of M.G. Sanchez. Her interest in Gibraltarian matters stems from a fortuitous meeting with a Gibraltarian student some years ago in Valladolid. She says she was fascinated by how a person who appeared to have little connection with either Spain or the British mainland could switch so effortlessly between the English and Spanish languages. From this moment on, as she herself says, “her personal curiosity transformed into an academic one” and she began to read about Gibraltarian history and culture, trying to understand the intricacies of the Gibraltarian mindset.
In the course of her research she came across the novels of local author M. G. Sanchez. “I was very intrigued by them,” Ms. Abas said, speaking exclusively to YourGibraltar TV.
“I think it’s remarkable how his novels evoke what could be termed Gibraltar’s ‘third-space sense of identity,’ an identity which is subject to both British and Spanish influences, but at the same time is also uniquely Gibraltarian, with its own one-of-a-kind sense of selfhood.”
In a related development, an article on M. G. Sanchez’s writing will be appearing in the May edition of the scholarly journal British and American Studies. Entitled ‘Mediterranean Gothic: M.G. Sanchez’s Gibraltar Fiction in its Context,’it has been authored by the well-known Gibraltar specialist Professor John A. Stotesbury of the University of Eastern Finland.
Pics: The author on a recent trip to Mongolia