Anti-Catalanism


Anti-Catalanism

Anti-Catalanism is the collective name given to various political attitudes, nowadays particularly in Spain, that oppose Catalanism. Hence, it can refer to a reaction against Catalan nationalism or, particularly, Catalan independentism. In a broader context, it may mean a xenophobic attitude towards the Catalan language, Catalan people, or anything identified with Catalonia and the political implications of this attitude. In its most extreme circumstances, this may also be referred as Catalanophobia.

Anti-Catalanism is most strongly associated with those Spain-wide political parties that are more to the right of the political spectrum. Far-right political groupings such as España 2000 object strongly to the autonomy enjoyed by Catalonia, claiming that the granting of autonomy to Catalonia and other regions will lead to the breakup of Spain. A former saying amongst latter day Francoists during the Spanish Transition (late 1970s, early 1980s) illustrating this attitude was: "Antes roja que rota", which roughly translates as: "(I would) Rather (see Spain) red than broken", meaning that these people would prefer to see Spain become Communist than have regions (like Catalonia or the Basque Country) seceding from it.

Several political movements, known for organizing boycotts of products from Catalonia, are also actively identified with anti-Catalanism.

Blaverism

Anti-Catalanism has a local and distinctive manifestation in the Valencian Community called Blaverism. It is a movement stemming from the refusal against the concept of the "Països Catalans" as elaborated by Valencian author Joan Fuster, which sees Valencia as part of a grouping of regions revolving around a common Catalan culture which should unite politically as an independent state from Spain. Proponents of Blaverism see this concept as Catalan expansionism. Blaverism is best reflected in debates concerning the status of Valencian, even though this phenomenon has diminished greatly over the last 25 years.

Concept criticism

Critics of this concept regard so-called anti-catalanism as a political manoeuvering tool, coined and used especially by Catalan nationalists. Critics state that the "anti-catalanism" tenet can potentially be used as a victimisation tool by means of which some elected Catalan representatives sublimate any criticism on their performance as elected representatives by deflecting it to Catalans or Catalonia as a whole instead. As such, whatever shortcomings or disagreements with their nationalistic agenda or any less than clear financial management are simply discarded as "anti-catalanism" thus derailing demands of accountability by the general public and pre-empting any policy or ideological criticism; according to this view, the "anti-catalanism" speech foments a non-dissenting environment and enhances support to Catalan nation building plans from a scarcely informed local or international community who is typically keen to support the underdog.

Critics argue accordingly that, within a context of manipulative politics and lack of objective and clear argumentation, the term anti-catalanism can be used as a demagogic or chauvinist concept to channel all non-conforming views about the Catalan nationalist agenda, which, according to these sources, silences alternative points of view, distorts reality and instigates animosity and hatred towards those –whether in Catalonia or, chiefly, in the rest of Spain– who do not conform to the group ideologies from a victimisation perspective, thus greatly reducing the possibility of diverse political choices.

Two new political parties created in Spain during the 2000s adhere to this line of reasoning, Citizens-Party of the Citizenry –which was established in Catalonia– and UPyD Union, Progress and Democracy, which has roots in a similarly nationalist dominated autonomous community, that of the Basque country.

ee also

* Black legend
* Lerrouxism

External links

* [http://www.eurozine.com/articles/2007-10-05-simon1-en.html Historical origins of anti-Catalanism]
* [http://www.cut-bai.org/catfob.htm La 'catalanofobia', expresión ideológica de masas del españolismo] Article deliberating on "Catalanophobia" and Spanish nationalism es
* [http://www.cercle21.org/butlleti/03/benet.html Interview to Josep Benet, in catalan]
* http://www.normalitzacio.net/testimonis/index.php?sec=testimonis&n=1392 The tradition of denaying catalan repression]
* [http://www.cut-bai.org/catfob.htm Catalanophobia mass' expression in Spain]
* [http://www.ciutadansdecatalunya.com/pdf/eng.pdf Manifesto by Catalan intellectuals denouncing excesses in Catalan nationalism rethoricen]

Further reading

*Jaume Medina, "L'anticatalanisme del diari ABC (1916-1936)", Publicacions de l'Abadia de Montserrat | col·lecció Biblioteca Serra d'Or. ISBN 978-84-7826-606-7


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