Catalan Identities: Literature, Social Commitment, and Political Engagement in the 20th Century

  • Pompeu CasanovasEmail author
  • Montserrat Corretger
  • Vicent Salvador


What does it mean to write in Catalan? What does ‘Catalan culture’ mean? And what does it mean to build a literary oeuvre? The life trajectories of the authors analysed in this volume enable us to explore these questions from the inside. Catalan culture and language originated in the early Middle Ages. This introductory chapter takes a modern stance and analyses the development of linguistic, literary and social identity in the 20th and 21st Centuries.


Catalonia Catalan identity Catalan literature Civil society 



This essay is part of the research carried out by the Universitat Rovira i Virgili’s research group Identitat Nacional i de Gènere en la Literatura Catalana and the Grup de Recerca Identitats en la Literatura Catalana (GRILC) (2017 SGR 599); the research carried out by some membres of the project “La construcción discursiva del conflicto” (FFI2017-85227- R); the research conducted at IDT-UAB on (i) “Meta-Rule of Law” (DER2016-78108-P) and (ii) “Models of Law and Catalan Political Philosophy”, Institut d’Estudis Catalans, IEC18-S05-CAS; and the research on legal governance and compliance accomplished by the La Trobe Law School LawTech research group at the CRC Data To Decisions program (DC25008, “Compliance by Design (CbD) and Compliance through Design (CtD)”.


  1. Anderson, B. [1983] (1991). Imagined communities: Reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism. New York: Verso Books.Google Scholar
  2. Anderson, B. (2003). Responses. In P. Cheah & J. Culler (Eds.), Grounds of comparison: Around the work of Benedict Anderson (pp. 226–245). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  3. Appadurai, A. (1997). Modernity at large: Cultural dimensions of globalization. Delhi, India: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  4. Ardanuy Baró, J., Urbano, C., & Quintana, L. (2009). The evolution of recent research on Catalan literature through the production of PhD theses: A bibliometric and social network analysis. Information Research, 4(2), 404.Google Scholar
  5. Bisson, T. N. (1986). L’essor de la Catalogne: identité, pouvoir et idéologie dans une société du XIIe siècle. Annales. Histoire, Sciences Sociales, 39(3) (May–June, 1984), 454–479.Google Scholar
  6. Cabré, A. (1999). El sistema català de reproducció. 100 anys de singularitat demogràfica. Barcelona: Editorial Proa.Google Scholar
  7. Cabré, A. (2018). Inauguració del curs 2018–2019 de l’Institut d’Estudis Catalans.
  8. Casanovas, P., Lauroba, E., Magre, J. (Dirs.) (2010). Llibre Blanc de la Mediació a Catalunya. Barcelona: Ed. Huygens, Departament de Justícia de la Generalitat de Catalunya. 1128 pp. Accessible in Catalan at: and
  9. Cheah, P., & Culler, J. (2003). Grounds of comparison: Around the work of Benedict Anderson. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  10. Conversi, D., & Jeram, S. (2017). Despite the crisis: The resilience of intercultural nationalism in Catalonia. International Migration, 55(2), 53–67.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Fernández-i-Marín, X., & López, J. (2010). Marco cultural de referencia y participación electoral en Cataluña. Revista Española de Ciencia Política, 23, 31–57.Google Scholar
  12. Gellner, E. (1983). Nations and nationalism. Ythaca: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  13. Gerrand, P. H. (2006). Cultural diversity in cyberspace: The Catalan campaign to win the new .cat top level domain. First Monday, 11(1)
  14. Gerrand, P. H. (2009). Minority languages on the Internet: Promoting the regional languages of Spain. Saarbrücken: VDM Verlag Dr. Müller.Google Scholar
  15. Giner, S. (Dir.) (1998). La societat catalana. Barcelona: Idescat, Generalitat de Catalunya.Google Scholar
  16. Giner, S. (2008). Què s’ha d’entendre per societat civil? Metropolis. Revista d’informació i pensaments urbans. El mite de la societat civil catalana, 71, 46–49.Google Scholar
  17. Guibernau, M. (2013). Nationalism versus cosmopolitanism: A comparative approach. Journal of Catalan Intellectual History, 5, 13–34.Google Scholar
  18. Guinjoan, M., & Rodón, T. (2015). A scrutiny of the Linz-Moreno question. Publius: The Journal of Federalism, 46(1), 28–142.Google Scholar
  19. Hobsbawm, E., & Ranger, T. (1983). The invention of traditon. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  20. King, S. (2005). Escribir la catalanidad. Lengua e identidades culturales en la narrativa contemporánea de Cataluña. London: Tamesis.Google Scholar
  21. Linz, J. J. (1975). Politics in a multi-lingual society with a dominant world language: The case of Spain. In J-G. Savard, R. Vigneault (Ed.), Les états multilingues: problèmes et solutions (pp. 367–444). Québec: Presses de l'Université de Laval.Google Scholar
  22. Llobera, J.-R. (1998). The role of historical memory in Catalan national identity. Social Anthropology, 6(3), 331–342.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Llobera, J.-R. (2005). Foundations of national identity. From Catalonia to Europe. New York, Oxford: Berghaghn Books.Google Scholar
  24. Moreno, L., & Arriba, N. (1996). Dual identity in autonomous Catalonia. Scottish Affairs, 17, 22–41.Google Scholar
  25. Nora, P. (1997). Les lieux de mémoire. Paris: Gallimard.Google Scholar
  26. Oller, D. (2005). Construcció i deconstrucció de la identitat. L’Espill, 21, 64–74.Google Scholar
  27. O’Rourke, B., Pujolar, J., & Ramallo, F. (2015). New speakers of minority languages: The challenging opportunity—Foreword. International Journal of the Sociology of Language, 231, 1–20.Google Scholar
  28. Poblet, M. (2013). Visualizing the law: Crisis mapping as an open tool for legal practice. Journal of Open Access to Law, 1, 1.Google Scholar
  29. Poblet, M. (2014). Crowdfunding culture in Catalonia: The revival of civil society? Journal of Catalan Intellectual History=Revista d’història de la filosofia catalana, 7–8, 177–180.Google Scholar
  30. Poblet, M. (2018). Distributed, privacy-enhancing technologies in the 2017 Catalan referendum on independence: New tactics and models of participatory democracy. First Monday, 23(12)
  31. Preston, P. (2012). The Spanish holocaust: Inquisition and extermination in twentieth-century Spain. London: W. W. Norton.Google Scholar
  32. Puig i Moreno, G. (1987). Reflexions sobre llengua i identitat. Treballs de Sociolingüística Catalana, 7, 31–49.Google Scholar
  33. Pujolar, J. (2013). Gender, heteroglossia and power: A sociolinguistic study of youth culture. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter.Google Scholar
  34. Resina, J.-R. (2000). Short of memory: The reclamation of the past since the Spanish transition to democracy. J. R. Resina (Ed.), Disremembering the dictatorship: The politics of memory in the Spanish transition to democracy (pp. 83–126). Amsterdam, Atlanta: Rodopi.Google Scholar
  35. Salvador, V. (2017). Fuster’s conception of literature as a social practice. Journal of Catalan Intellectual History (JOCIH), 11, 122–133.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Stepan, A., Linz, J. J., & Yadav, Y. (2010). The rise of state-nations. Journal of Democracy, 21(3), 50–68.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Strubell, M., & Boix-Fuster, E. (Eds.). (2011). Democratic policies for language revitalisation: The case of Catalan. Dortmund: Springer.Google Scholar
  38. Vicens, L., & Tedó, X. (2018). Operació urnes. Barcelona: Columna.Google Scholar
  39. Vicens Vives, J. (1954). Notícia de Catalunya. Barcelona: Destino.Google Scholar
  40. Woolard, K. (2008). Les ideologies lingüístiques: una visió general d’un camp des de l’antropologia lingüística. Revista de llengua i dret, 49, 179–199.Google Scholar
  41. Woolard, K. (2013). Is the personal political? Chronotopes and changing stances toward Catalan language and identity. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 16(2), 210–224.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Woolard, K. (2016). Singular and plural: Ideologies of linguistic authority in 21st century Catalonia. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pompeu Casanovas
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Montserrat Corretger
    • 3
  • Vicent Salvador
    • 4
  1. 1.La Trobe Law SchoolLa Trobe UniversityBundoora, MelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.UAB Institute of Law and Technology, Faculty of LawUniversitat Autònoma de BarcelonaBarcelonaSpain
  3. 3.Departament de Filologia CatalanaRovira i Virgili UniversityTarragonaSpain
  4. 4.Departament de Filologia i Cultures EuropeesUniversitat Jaume ICastelló de la PlanaSpain

Personalised recommendations