Friday, February 18, 2011

Catalan TV banished from Valencian Country

After 26 years of emissions, TV3, the public TV of Catalonia, in Catalan language, has been forced to stop emissions in the Valencian Country under threat of fine of €60,000 every 15 days. 

The Valencian Country (officially Valencian Community) is a mostly Catalan-speaking territory annexed to the newly created Kingdom of Spain after the War of Spanish Succession in the 18th century, as happened with the other states of the Crown of Aragon, largely a Catalan-speaking federation. 

Unlike in Catalonia and to some extent the Balearic Islands, where national identity is stronger, the Valencian Country has been subject to a strong process of denationalization. At the left we can see where Catalan (Valencian dialect) is spoken more or less frequently in the country (from Wikimedia commons). 

There is no other Catalan language TV in the country, as the Spanish nationalist government has mostly disdained the promotion of the native tongue. 

Source: Sare Antifaxista.


  1. I used to watch the official Valencian TV on satellite (before it was shut down for financial reasons like most international TVs) and it was broadcast in Catalan, more precisely in Valencian i.e. a variant of western Pyrenean Catalan exported southwards during the Reconquista (whereas modern West "Valencia" switched to Aragonese then to Castillian). It still seems to be true.

    It cannot be denied that "Valencia" somehow has an identity issue but IMO the arrogance of Barcelona is not to be downplayed. If most Catalan sectors were not that obsessed with linguistic normalization (the sole fact of denying that Valencians name their language "Valencian" is not very clever), I suppose relationships between both communities could improve.

    Here, in the alleged "Occitania", we have to suffer from Catalan normalizing policies. For instance, many Catalan linguists - allied to Languedocian militants - are arguing that protecting Aranese, the local Gascon dialect of Aran, is not practical and that the Govern should have helped forge an Occitan standard based on a fictive Languedocian that is spoken nowhere. Catalan militants aim at doing the same thing in Valencia : that's ridiculous as Catalan spoken in Valencia and Catalan spoken in Catalonia are mutually intelligible in the first place. "Let your Valencian cousins choose which form of Catalan they want to speak".

  2. Catalonia is the only polity in the world where Gascon is locally co-official, in the Aran Valley. I find hard to believe that one can argue against Catalan policies re. Gascon, which only exists in a remote valley in all Catalonia, when neither France nor Aquitaine nor Midi-Pyrenees respect at all this autochthonous romance nor give it any official status whatsoever.

  3. The Aranese people were the ones who successfully obtained linguistic rights under the Tripartit (CiU had always opposed such rights) even though that very same Tripartit once aimed to fuse the valley into a Catalan Pyrenean vigueria.

    I understand that you might find strange one can oppose Catalan policies regarding the Aranese language but a fact is that both the legislative text concerning Aranese (which was initially named "Lei der occitan" as Catalan people behind that text, inspired by their Languedocian friends, believed that naming this law "Lei der aranés" was about being too local) and many official documents clearly state that the goal of such policy is not really the protection of the local Gascon variant spoken in Aran but the building of an Occitan standard based on Languedocian the officiality of which will make it the sole de facto "Occitan" language.

    There is a disguised battle within Occitan circles about what to do now that "Occitan" is a dead language. Thanks to their Catalan friends, Languedocians are currently trying to forge a linguistic standard. This is the ultimate avatar of Languedocian jacobinism, one that will succeed as nobody can oppose them. The little valley of Aran is the laboratory of occitanism.

  4. The real problem in Valencia isn't the so-called Catalan "imperialism", which it's rather mild when compared to the Spanish one.

    Spanish nationalist parties (PP and to a lesser extent, also PSOE) fueled a Valencian standard different from catalan in order to divide and conquer the Catalan countries.


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