The Line and the Limit of Britishness: The Construction of Gibraltarian Identity in M. G. Sanchez’s Writing
Keywords:Gibraltar, gibraltarian literature, gibraltarian identity, contamination, border
From Anthony Burgess’s musings during the Second World War to recent scholarly assessments, Gibraltar has been considered a no man’s literary land. However, the Rock has produced a steady body of literature written in English throughout the second half of the twentieth century and into the present. Apparently situated in the midst of two identitary deficits, Gibraltarian literature occupies a narrative space that is neither British nor Spanish but something else. M. G. Sanchez’s novels and memoir situate themselves in this liminal space of multiple cultural traditions and linguistic contami-nation. The writer anatomizes this space crossed and partitioned by multiple and fluid borders and boundaries. What appears as deficient or lacking from the British and the Spanish points of view, the curse of the periphery, the curse of inhabiting a no man’s land, is repossessed in Sanchez’s writing in order to flesh out a border culture with very specific linguistic and cultural traits.
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