Bon Cop de Falç!

"Encara podem pujar... i ser una nació de nou..."

Encara podem pujar… i ser una nació de nou…

I’ve often wondered about Nationalism, even long before the referendum came along. Scottish independence is always something that seemed right to me, and I simply couldn’t understand why the Scottish people dwelt in this sort of limbo between regional and national status. How could we be our own nation, with our own national legal system, national education, national health services, national trust, national arts organisations, even national football teams, yet not have control over our national finances, national welfare, national resources, national defence, national budget? It seemed like we were a nation in only some respects, and a region in others. Yet why have we never had a direct say in exactly what respects we are a country, and in which we are a region?

Today, Catalonia must make their decision on a similar question to the one Scots made on the 18th of September, but for them, the stakes are even higher: in Spain, there is no rhetoric about Catalonia being part of a “family of nations.” You cannot really be a “proud Catalan” while still being a “proud Spaniard” as if they are both nationalities. Most damning, the Spanish government are refusing to recognize this referendum. Already we’ve seen brutish displays of colonial might in the form of tanks cruising along roads, attempting to cow the population into subservience. We’ve been there.

Go For It Catalonia

I’d love to say my interests are entirely selfless, but it shouldn’t need to be said that I do hope that a successful Si vote in Catalonia will help galvanise the continued fight for independence in my homeland – and that of other countries throughout the world. For all the filibustering about the Evils of Nationalism, it’s clear to me that the vast majority of independence movements are not based around the old ideas of conquest and supremacy, but the simple desire for self-determination. Whichever way the vote goes, I feel like my reaction would be little different to my reaction to Scotland’s vote – and tears either way. For any vote for self-determination, especially in the face of such adversity from a larger, controlling polity, is a victory for the self-determination of all human beings.

Future Europe

Consider: what if it was different? What if the seat of Spanish power was centralised not in Madrid, but Barcelona? What if the dominant language of Spain – and thus, a great proportion of the world – was Catalan, not Spanish? What if the national anthem of Spain was not “Marcha Real,” but “Els Segadors”? Would we not respect the right of the Spanish people to assert their independence? Would we not see the injustice of a nation not having control over its own national affairs? Would we not urge them to take responsibility for themselves, cut themselves from the ties that bind them, join the cloud of butterflies with those nations already free?

From the bottom of my heart, I wish you well, Catalunya. Vote Si – for yourselves, and for all of us.

Catalunya triomfant,
tornarà a ser rica i plena.
Endarrera aquesta gent
tan ufana i tan superba.

Bon cop de falç!
Bon cop de falç, defensors de la terra!
Bon cop de falç!

Ara és hora, segadors.
Ara és hora d’estar alerta.
Per quan vingui un altre juny,
esmolem ben bé les eines.

Bon cop de falç!
Bon cop de falç, defensors de la terra!
Bon cop de falç!

Que tremoli l’enemic,
en veient la nostra ensenya.
Com fem caure espigues d’or,
quan convé seguem cadenes.

Bon cop de falç!
Bon cop de falç, defensors de la terra!
Bon cop de falç!


One thought on “Bon Cop de Falç!

  1. wwilmawatts says:

    Wonderful article, as was the one about Lewes.
    My only experience of Catalonia was in the early 80s my husband and I visited a little town on the coast near Barcelona. No one spoke English, which we thought was wonderful. We had our phrase book and valiantly tried to do the usual tourist things. Nobody responded to us at all, whether in the supermarket or restaurants. We went every day to a little cafe run by a mother, and daughter called Mercedes. Through sign language and the occasional word we discovered our phrase book was in Castilian not Catalan! Hence the problem. Also the mother said one day, pointing to me, that she liked me because she knew by my accent that I was Scottish but shook her head, muttered something under her breath, at Michael, made a face and said “English”! After we had a laugh about it they were very friendly. Fingers crossed for today.
    I wrote to you about becoming involved in The Yes Alliance Action group but I think it can only be through Facebook. The group I am involved with, Mid Argyll Yes Alliance is going to create a newsletter called Fairer Scotland, especially to try to reach people who have no access to the internet, or if they do have access, no idea what to look for. Maybe you would be interested in helping out with that? We are trying to do very short pieces to whet the appetite ,maybe just get people curious without ramming stuff down their throats. Weegingerdug has kindly done an intro for us.We are having a fundraiser in Lochgilphead on the 29th November at the Stag Hotel which has been incredibly supportive through the whole Campaign. Citizen Smart and Shaun Moore, the poet and performer are providing their services for free, The Stag has offered them accommodation, so generous. That is why I have been AWOL, organising the fundraiser and the newsletter. We really are a bunch of amateurs. What we lack in knowledge we make up for in enthusiasm.
    On my own little blog ,you will have seen, I only use it to as a collection “box” like a scrap book. I had intended, if we had won, to write my own thoughts about how we got to our destination. I am not a writer at all– just have very strong opinions! Sorry to have taken so much space in your comments section. Get in touch if you like,, you know my address. Wilma

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