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The Turbid Azure of Being Three Times a Rebel: Commitment and Identity in the Works of M. Aurèlia Capmany, Montserrat Roig and M. Mercè Marçal

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The Rise of Catalan Identity

Abstract

The famous verse with which Maria Mercè Marçal (1952–1998) closes her poem “Motto”, from Cau de llunes (Refuge of Moons, 1977), refers to the three axes that articulate her identity and, also, those of two authors who precede and accompany her, respectively, in this painful path of self-assertion that the three hold from the end of the war to the seventies (and beyond): Maria Aurèlia Capmany (1918–1991) and Montserrat Roig (1946–1991). We are referring to their political activism with leftist ideology, their commitment to Catalan language and culture as a necessary source of identity and, finally, feminism, understood as an ideology that helps them to get rid of alien definitions. From essay, narrative fiction and poetry, then, these authors assert their own identity and become the voice of a generation that seeks to influence, through words, the world around them, and contribute to the change toward democracy.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Writer, teacher, translator and literary critic, Marçal is best known for her poetry and the novel La passió segons Renée Vivien (1994). For more information, see Díaz (2014).

  2. 2.

    Novelist, essayist, translator, cultural activist and closely involved with the world of theatre, Capmany is one of the most influential intellectuals in contemporary Catalan culture. For more information, see Nadal (1991).

  3. 3.

    Narrator, essayist and journalist, Roig’s work is notable for giving a voice to those silenced by History and for its commitment to feminism and left-wing Catalanism. For more information, see Davies (1994).

  4. 4.

    All the translations to English from Catalan texts (as detailed in References section of this paper) are mine.

  5. 5.

    In 1970 there was a summary trial (a Council of War presided over by members of the military) against sixteen members of the armed Basque organisation ETA (Euskadi ta Askatasuna, Basque Country and Freedom) accused of three assassinations and other crimes against the Franco regime. On 12, 13 and 14 December, three hundred Catalan intellectuals locked themselves in the Abbey of Montserrat to protest against the death sentences handed down by the court martial and published a manifesto seeking political amnesty, democratic freedom and Catalonia’s right to self-rule. The Permanent Assembly of Catalan Intellectuals was also formed during the protest.

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Correspondence to M. Àngels Francés-Díez .

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Francés-Díez, M.À. (2019). The Turbid Azure of Being Three Times a Rebel: Commitment and Identity in the Works of M. Aurèlia Capmany, Montserrat Roig and M. Mercè Marçal. In: Casanovas, P., Corretger, M., Salvador, V. (eds) The Rise of Catalan Identity. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-18144-4_16

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