Martha, an American, has been listening to and transcribing interviews in Spanish and Valenciano. Some of the interviews had a rough first transcription done by Spanish-speakers. Now Fabian and Martha are checking and correcting transcriptions which is very time-consuming task. The hardest ones are interviews with 80 and 90 year old Valencian speakers which can take days to get one story of a few paragraphs.
This week we have been sorting out interviews with the two Anarchists (which Martha feels she has done several times already). One interview seemed particularly interesting because there were references to events in the 1920’s, but some of the statements did not fit what is already known. We begin by digitizing the cassette and then listening. Fabian marks strategic points on the digitized copy as we work. The hour-long interview had six pages of transcription; after a couple of hours we have two pages more. There will probably be from 12 to 15 pages. As we listen, more stories of the 1920s and 30s unfold. They have so many visual and dramatic moments, we begin to imagine a movie. There is a reward for this very detailed work.
One of the stories we enjoyed following was about the leftist-leaning priest who had a big following in Càlig particularly among the poor people. He was so respected in the village that he was only under house arrest at the beginning of the war while the other priests were killed. At the end of the war he was able to save many of the men who had death sentences (if they had not killed anyone).