Wished-for and Unwished-for Identities
Edited By Flocel Sabaté
The Building of the Catalan Nation in the Works of Maria Aurèlia Capmany
Universitat Rovira i Virgili
1.The Historical Memory
It is impossible to speak of Maria Aurèlia Capmany without speaking of memory, specifically historical memory, because she puts considerable effort into recovering our collective history, to prevent it being lost. In Varietats 1 (“Varieties 1”), que el temps passa / i tot ho esborra (“time passes / and erases everything”)1, when complaining about the case of Francesc Layret, who she says és doblement mort perquè l’oblit l’ha matat amb una força renovada (“is doubly dead because oblivion has killed him with renewed force”)2. At the end of the play, however, she concludes exactly the opposite: Un home com en Layret és difícil de matar perquè els que l’han conegut en parlaran, i aquests en parlaran a uns altres i a uns altres… […] Francesc Layret, advocat del poble de Catalunya, et recordarem (“It’s difficult to kill off a man like Layret, because those who knew him will talk to others about him and they will talk to others, who will talk to others… […] Francesc Layret, lawyer of the people of Catalonia, we will remember you”)3. Maria Aurèlia Capmany wanted us all to feel part of a single entity that unites us linguistically and culturally, despite the opinion of those who, throughout history, have attempted to achieve exactly the opposite.
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