Alexander J. Brock

Berkeley, California, United States

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Alexander J. Brock

"It is normally supposed that something always gets lost in translation; I cling obstinately to the notion that something can also be gained." Salman Rushdie

I am a guy from Cincinnati, OH, who simply fell in love with learning foreign languages. By the time I went to college, I wanted something different than the by-now-familiar "Western" languages, having studied French, Spanish, German, and Ancient Homeric Greek. So, I decided to study Arabic in college.

I was instantly fascinated by, and fell in love with, the Arabic language--strong feelings which I still have today. I participated in a year-long study abroad program with the American University in Cairo, Egypt, and my passion for Arabic expanded to include a whole culture and part of the world about which I previously had known nothing.

Determined to return to Egypt, I applied for and was awarded a Fulbright Research Grant to conduct further research in Islamic philosophy, during which time I translated an article by the political philosopher Jamal al-Din al-Afghani, not previously translated into English, on "al-qa?a? wa-l-qadar" (Fate and Divine Decree).

I also had the very cool and fun opportunity to work with the famous Egyptian comedic actor Ahmed Helmy on the movie "Asl Eswed." Mr. Helmy had many English lines in that movie for his role, so I taught him English pronunciation, and edited the script where the original dialogue did not accurately reflect contemporary American English.

Toward the end of my grant I started working for National Geographic Magazine, as they were launching the Arabic edition in October 2010 and needed translation editors. I, along with three Arab editors, became the magazine's translation editors. After the magazine's one-year anniversary, I was chosen as the only editor to continue working for the magazine, reviewing translations on a post-publication basis, and picking up the same role for the French edition once they learned of my French fluency. I continue to work both the Arabic and French positions to this day.

I am also currently a law student at the UC Berkeley School of Law, but am taking a semester off.

Work Terms

Please feel free to contact me any time about projects that you need to have translated, or with inquiries for estimates or quotes. I am available at and by phone at 513.600.2204.

There must be an agreement, signed by both parties, outlining the terms of the agreement, including the rate of payment (on a whole-project basis, or with a price-per-word rate), deadlines for the project, and other relevant details, before I can begin work on a project. It does not have to be anything too formal, it simply needs to lay out the details of who agrees to do what and by when.

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