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The memory of immigration in Catalan nationalism

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The role of immigration on the crafting of Catalan national identity has, in general terms, been underestimated. Despite the arrival of as many as three million immigrants into Catalan society during the course of the twentieth century, this phenomenon and its contribution to the reinforcement and survival of Catalan cultural uniqueness has not been recognized. This article argues that without immigration, Catalonia would potentially have suffered economic decadence, cultural irrelevance and political non-existence. The author seeks to construct a theoretical model of analysis of the immigrant’s status dilution and the benefits of transforming immigration in a ‘place of memory’ for the Catalan national identity.

Keywords: Catalonia; Immigration; Memory; National identity

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona

Publication date: August 18, 2005

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  • The International Journal of Iberian Studies (IJIS) is the academic journal for scholars from around the world whose research focuses on contemporary Spain and Portugal from a range of disciplinary perspectives. IJIS is interested in history (20th century onwards), government and politics; foreign policy and international relations.
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