Els castellans

The Castilians | L'Avenç, 2011

During the 70s, a small industrial town inland of Catalonia becomes a destination point for emigrants from the South of Spain. In the open spaces of its outskirts, on an unpaved ground, new buildings are being constructed for those emigrants.

They are not Castilians, but among the townspeople, they are known as els castellans, the Castilians. And a permanent rivalry arises, between sons of the ones and the others, between gangs of «Castilians» and «Catalans», a state of war that has the complicity of their parents. It is the eternal war between Cowboys and Indians, police and thieves, Muslims and Christians, the war that children replicate in their games as a mirror of reality.

With the marvelous and funny stories that make up this book, where the author describes his own childhood on the side of «the Catalans», Puntí  turns the mirror until it reaches the point of view of true literature: when we find out that each side is the reflection of the other.

Puntí describes these combat areas which are also the meeting places: the bar’s pinball, the summer swimming pool or the seats in the movie theater. Using this fight for small spaces and his own memory, the author goes in search of the heart of man.