Date of Award

Spring 2013

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Major

Hispanic Studies

First Advisor

Profesora Priscilla Meléndez

Second Advisor

Profesor Thomas Harrington

Abstract

The tension between the region of Catalonia and the rest of Spain has a long and complex history. In the last year, the issue of Catalan separatism has come to the forefront of Spanish news. Many blame the downturn in the global economy for Catalonia’s recent push for further autonomy. However, the desire to affirm a Catalan culture that is not Spanish has much deeper roots than the recent recession. This paper argues that the principle reason for the continuous push for Catalan sovereignty is the history of repression of this culture and the resulting distinct sense of identity and pride. If it had not been for the repression of the Catalan identity during the fascist dictatorship of Francisco Franco in Spain between 1939 and 1975, the people of Catalonia would not have acted with such resentment against the rest of Spain due to financial hardships. The history of Catalan repression following the Spanish Civil War is explored in this paper through the Noticiarios y Documentales (NO-DOs) of the Franco regimen which were produced and viewed between 1943 and 1981. These newsreels, which were required to be shown in cinemas prior to each film, were the only source of national and international audiovisual news during the forty years of the dictatorship and are filled with propaganda promoting a singular homogeneous vision of Spain that did not include the Catalan culture. The aim of this paper is not to argue whether Catalonia should have its independence, but rather to show through the NO-DOs, the circumstances that have resulted in the lasting tension between Catalonia and the rest of Spain.

Comments

Senior thesis completed at Trinity College for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in Hispanic Studies and Economics.