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Catalan nationalism

Catalan nationalism is a political movement that advocates for the political autonomy of Catalonia or the Catalan Countries, and in some cases, independence from Spain and France. It was born in the XIX century, with the aim of restoring some kind of self-goverment to Catalonia, and obtaining a recognition for the catalan language. These demands were summarized in the so-called Bases de Manresa in 1892.

During the first part of the XX century, the main nationalist party was the right-wing Lliga Regionalista, headed by Francesc Cambķ. The main achievement in this period was the Mancomunitat a grouping of the four catalan provinces, with limited administrative power. This institution was abolished during the dictatorship of Miguel Primo de Rivera.

In 1931, the left-wing Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya party won the elections in Catalonia, advocating for a catalan republic federated with Spain. Under pressure of the Spanish government, the leader of ERC, Francesc Maciā, accepted instead an autonomous catalan government, which was called Generalitat de Catalunya. Again, this was abolished in 1939, after the Spanish Civil War.

Several political or cultural catalan movements operated in the clandestinity during the dictatorship of Francisco Franco, which lasted until 1975. A president of the catalan government was still designed and operated symbolically in the exile. In 1980, the Generalitat was restored again, and Jordi Pujol was elected president. Local governments in the Valencian Country and the Balearic Islands were also elected. In contrast, there is no significant political autonomy, nor recognition of the language in the historical catalan territories belonging to France (Roussillon).

Nowadays, the main political parties which define themselves as being catalan nationalists are Convergčncia Democrātica de Catalunya, Uniķ Democrātica de Catalunya and Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya. A significant part of the population in Catalonia would support a larger degree of autonomy, and some of them would prefer and independent state.