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CUBA IN THE CULTURAL IMAGINARY OF CATALONIA

We Accept. Shipping Methods business days Minimum 10 business days. However, new vast markets, both in Spain and Europe, open up for the products of incipient Catalan manufactures. In the early eighteenth century, Catalan merchants start establishing their representatives in Cadiz in order to ship their merchandise to the Americas on Spanish ships. According to Josep Fradera, this arrangement allows the Spanish Crown to exercise complete tax control and double monopoly through the Spanish merchant fleet, on the one hand, and through the privileged Houses of Commerce of Seville and Cadiz, on the other Els Catalans arriben tard 6.

At the same time, the Catalans who engage in commerce and fully depend on the merchandise brought by the Spanish ships start to establish themselves in some overseas ports, thus laying the foundation for the Catalan commercial diaspora. Drawing on Pierre Vilars theory of peripheral recuperation, it is generally agreed that by the late eighteenth century, Catalonia manages to recover economically and demographically from the devastation initially caused by the plague in the fourteenth century and later aggravated by the wars, in which Catalonia continuously participates in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries.

By the end of the eighteenth century, Catalonia accumulates enough manufactured products to start the expansion to other markets, which, with the liquidation of the Cadiz privileges in , include vast overseas markets. Catalonia starts to export agricultural produce and productswine, brandy, dried fruit, waxto the colonies.

The products of Catalan incipient industries, such as paper and printed calico, are destined mostly to the Spanish interior market and, specifically, Madrid Fradera,. By the time Charles III signs on October 12, the Reglamento y Aranceles Reales para el Comercio Libre, Catalan merchants and owners of commercial fleet are ready to expand their commerce, or diaspora, overseas.

In the words of Fradera, the Catalans arrive late, but with power, amb forga, to the colonial high road Els Catalans 6. The term diaspora applied to Catalan commercial system overseas originates as the definition of the Catalan system of commerce in the Mediterranean. The peak of Catalan commercial activity in the Western Mediterranean is the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. From as early as the thirteenth century, Catalan merchants establish their representatives in Mediterranean ports and dominate the Western Mediterranean trade up to the second half of the fifteenth century, when it slowly declines Vicens Vives, An Economic History The organization of Catalan trade in the form of a commercial diaspora is represented as another differentiating trait of Catalan nation comparable to such distinctive features of Catalan identity as pactismo, a system of civic agreement between the citizens and the ruling administration, or the Corts, a parliamentary system claimed as original to Catalonia.

In Noticia de Cataluna , Vicens Vives distinguishes the naval and commercial expansion of Catalonia in the Mediterranean as a factor comparable to the most relevant traits that constitute the differential facts of the Catalans: Si el proceso historico debilito nuestras fuerzas en el preciso instante en que el Atlantico se ofrecfa con todas sus tentadoras empresas, no por ello hemos de silenciar las notables realizaciones que emprendimos durante los siglos XIV y XV en el Mediterraneo.

En ellas vimos precisamente, una de las facetas mas finas y sensibles del espfritu de nuestro pueblo, similar a la solution pactista del nexo politico entre el Estado y los ciudadanos que hemos examinado anteriormente. El establecimiento de los catalanes, una diaspora comercial. La partida de los gallegos y asturianos se justifica, en cambio, por la busqueda de recursos de apoyo para una explotacion familiar rural economicamente inviable por sus reducidas dimensiones, en un contexto de sobrepoblacion relativa y de oferta limitada de trabajo.

Nation e inmigracion 67 Catalan immigration and commercial enterprise in Cuba are most active between , the year when the Cadiz privileges were eliminated, and the beginning of the s, the time of the first Cuban war for independence. During most of the period of Catalan commercial enterprise in Cuba, trade technology still preserves the atavistic features of the seventeenth century trade. On the one hand, travel by sail ships presupposes slow and high-risk trips. On the other, payments in form of bills of exchange require the travel of merchants together with their merchandise and means of payment.


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This arrangement leads to a vast network of agents of absolute reliability, generally belonging to the same family who are able to connect directly, man to man, the markets on both sides of the Atlantic. Catalans, with their longstanding tradition of commercial diaspora in the Mediterranean, project their experience to the Atlantic.

The massive expansion to the Caribbean starts at the end of the eighteenth century and achieves its climax in the middle of the nineteenth century Yanez, Saltar con red The lead in commerce during the first stages of overseas expansion belongs to the population of the Catalan coastal towns. According to Delgado Ribas, at the end of the eighteenth century, twenty four per cent of all Catalan immigrants were from Barcelona, twelve per cent from Mataro and thirty five per cent from Sitges and Vilanova combined.

He explains this phenomenon by the general process of specialization, which takes place on the Catalan coast during the second half of the eighteenth century Els comerciants Catalans Powerful overseas commerce generates conditions that allow Catalan sailors and merchants to visit American ports continuously for many decades. These liaisons create strong links between Catalans who establish residence in overseas ports and those who stay in their native towns. Continuous voyages of Catalan ships from coastal towns to the Americas, mostly to the Western Caribbean, make it possible for generations of Catalans from coastal towns to be aware of the opportunities which offer themselves to those eager to abandon their homes and assume the risk of crossing the seas, cruzar el charco Yanez, Saltar con red According to Delgado Ribas, forty-three per cent of Catalan immigrants would settle on the Antillean islands, while one quarter of the immigrants would conduct their business in the River Plata area Els comerciants Catalans Yanez emphasizes the continuity of three relevant features of the early Catalan immigration: the protagonism of merchants and sailors from the coastal towns of Catalonia; the form of diaspora assumed by immigration; and specific territories chosen for immigration Saltar con red Catalan immigration to the West Indies is stimulated by high attractiveness and grows steadily until the second half of the nineteenth century.

Delgado Ribas has studied 1, known cases of early immigration between and Later, in the central decades of the nineteenth century, the average number of immigrants equals or exceeds a thousand per year Yanez, Saltar con red With the growth. Baily on the examples of Italian immigration in Argentina and New York. If at the beginning immigration is the prerogative of merchants and sailors, by the s immigration includes representatives of almost all social strata and professional occupations.

However, the majority of immigrants are young unmarried men, sometimes starting at the age of twelve, who come from an urban milieu and in many cases possess a profession. The numbers of immigrant women are significantly lower than those of men. Male immigration, in all periods for which data is available, always exceeds eighty per cent of the total of immigrants. In most cases, women immigrate to reunite with family members Yanez, Saltar con red With the raising in of the Reglamento del Comercio Libre that limited the stay in the colonies to three years with an obligatory return to Spain, immigration becomes more stable.

The state loses control over immigration after , the year when the issuance of passports is delegated to local authorities. This liberalization opens doors to massive immigration. However, due to the absence of statistical data, it seems problematic to calculate the amounts of immigrating Catalans, and data quoted by researchers differ. Yanez uses the study by Perez Murillo who found in the Archivo General de Indias 2, embarkation licenses of Catalans who traveled to Cuba between and Most of them proceeded to the Indies to work in commerce and were demanded by a family member.

Out of 4, Spaniards whose licenses were found in the Archive, the Catalans constitute Based on this data, Yanez speculates that Catalan immigrants constitute Since the late eighteenth century, Cuba presents exclusive opportunities for economic growth and development due to its flourishing sugar industry. The shifting of the world sugar production from the French colony of Saint-Domingue after the slave revolt of , converted Cuba into the major sugar producing country in the world and created enormous opportunities for outstanding growth and development on the island.

The steady growth of the Cuban sugar industry, on the one hand, and the continuation of the Spanish colonial dominion on the other, constitutes two major factors that add to the attractiveness of immigration. In the collective conscience of Spain and Catalonia, the continuous journeys back and forth of successful immigrants create an aura of relatively rapid wealth behind the counter of a comer store.

According to Yanezs calculation based on partial data offered by Jacobo de la Pezuela, the number of the Catalans residing in Cuba between and was of about 10,, which represents According to Yanez, there was no other peninsular group that possessed technical and professional capacities to benefit from the opportunities offered by customs duties protection to the Spanish merchant marine as the Catalans. By the s, Catalonia had a merchant fleet with experienced crews and captains who knew very well the mechanisms of Atlantic commerce. Not only did they possess the know-how of navigation and commerce and had established representatives in the Caribbean ports since the beginning of the century, they also possessed social and cultural cohesion that allowed them to act as a group of interest.

Maluquer de Motes, Yanez, and Moreno Fraginals insist on specific relations within the Catalan ethnic group in Cuba which add to the success of the immigrants. Cooperation and subordination, closely linked to cultural identity according to Yanez, distinguishes the Catalans from other competing groups Saltar con red According to the Cuban historian Moreno Fraginals, the Catalans constitute a differentiated ethnical group that preserved its distinct cultural identity in Cuban society, as opposed to all other Spaniards, denominated peninsulares in Cuba: El Catalan, a su llegada a Cuba, entraba en contacto con su grupo etnico diferenciado dentro de la poblacion peninsular en la Isla, que en la ideologia polftica era colonialista y en la dimension social asumfa los valores burgueses.

Mediante la cohesion de los elementos regionales, la solidaridad etnica reforzaba la ideologia polftica y evitaba, o por lo menos entorpecfa, que el grupo Catalan se integrase en las subculturas del grupo criollo receptor. La fuerza del prejuicio hacia el negro y hacia el criollo los llevo a adoptar los marcos de referencia de la cultura de sus antepasados: es decir, afianzarse en sus rafces. Esta fue la razon del exito y la persistencia de la Sociedad. El Catalan fue el unico grupo migratorio cuya herencia etnocultural sobregiro el concepto de lo espanol peninsular adquiriendo una connotacion especffica dentro de la sociedad.

The aura of the specialization in commerce and the wealth of the Catalans nurture the legend of Catalan prosperity in Cuba that gradually propagates in Catalonia and beyond it. Testimony of a specific position of Catalans in Cuban society can be found in various literary sources dating back to as early as the s. The Countess of Merlins observation about Catalans as those who arrive to the island of Cuba without patrimony and create immense fortunes thereused as an epigraph to this chapteris taken from her Viaie a La Habana first published in North American traveler John G.

Wundermann, repeatedly quoted by Catalan researchers, also publishes his Notes on Cuba in He describes Cuban trade of the period as concentrated in the hands of the Catalans who are generally referred to as the Spanish Jews: [ These latter, are an industrious, shrewd, economical class; and have, perhaps in consequence of these qualities, received their sobriquet of Spanish Jews, which can only be construed into a compliment to the Israelite.

A large portion of the commerce of the island is in their hands, as well as a very great part of its wealth. In the interior of the island they appear to monopolize every branch of trading, from the pack of the humble pedlar to the. It is repeatedly stressed that having started with merchant marine trafficking, the Catalans gradually diversify and increase their interests with the growth of their fortunes, and subsequently occupy a prominent position in the Spanish colonial elite of Cuba.

This assertion leads Yanez to the following statement: Es posible que sea una exageracion decir que Cuba y Puerto Rico fueron colonias catalanas mas que espanolas, pero en el siglo XIX no es desmedido afirmar que el colonialismo espanol no se hubiera sostenido igual sin el concurso de los catalanes Saltar con red Maluquer de Motes not only stresses the importance of Catalan presence in Cuba during the first two thirds of the nineteenth century, but also points to the commercial specialization of this minority group and to their close connection with the economy of their native region: Aparece en forma dispersa en el territorio y concentrada en labores asociadas al desarrollo y financiacion de la plantation azucarera y de la economfa de exportation.

Su principal dedication a la intermediation comercial se define en la creation de un mercado interior, complementario de los flujos de extraction del azucar y de intemacion de alimentos y manufacturados para el consumo interior. Un comportamiento compacto, de mutuo apoyo entre sus miembros, refleja, en fin, la pertenencia a una diaspora comercial asociada a las relaciones exteriores de la.

Nation e inmigracion 93 The collective perception of Catalans in Cuba as merchants is even reflected in Cuban idiomatic expressions. The word Catalan in nineteenth-century Cuba is used to signify the owner of a comer store. Fernando Ortizs Nuevo catauro de cubanismos offers the following definition o f the word Catalan:. En Oriente, sinonimo de bodeguero. Antano fue sinonimo de bodeguero, modesto comerciante de vfveres, que entre nosotros es cabeza de turco de befas y bromas, como en Madrid el hortera. Por eso se canto la guaracha: A1 pasar por un barranco, Grito un negrito bozal: ;Ay, mi Dio!

Quien fuera branco, Aunque fuera Catalan! Moreno Fraginals explains: El teatro bufo, que reflejo como ninguna otra manifestation artfstica la realidad cubana, hizo de el Catalan su personaje clave en contrapunto con la mulata de rumbo y el negrito sagaz y oportunista, que era una vision disimulada y despectiva del criollo.

Fue necesaria la enorme migration del ultimo tercio del siglo XIX para que el Catalan fuese sustituido por el gallego en el teatro. This popular refrain is quoted virtually by every author who writes about the presence of Catalans in Cuba. In these literary representations, most of which are dramatic works, the figures of indianos36 or americanos are frequently associated with a slave trade that is condemned by the authors. Urban projects, TO. Even today, the names of Josep Xifre, Salvador Sama, Panxo Marti, Antonio Lopez y Lopez, and Joan Giiell are still associated with the prosperity of Catalan financial capital in the second half of the nineteenth century, and are also directly linked to some landmarks of Barcelona and coastal towns of Catalonia.

Following the tradition started in the literature of the Spanish Golden Age, with such acclaimed contributors as Lope de Vega, the figure of indiano is a recurrent character in Spanish and Catalan narrative. LAvenq 75 : It is constantly stressed throughout the works devoted to Catalan participation in Spains colonial enterprise that the first railroad in Spain between Barcelona and Mataro was built with the capital created in Cuba. It happens in , while the first railroad in Cuba is built in In the pioneering work that opens the discussion of the role of Catalonia in the Spanish colonial enterprise, La burguesfa catalana i la esclavitud colonial: modes de produccio i practica polftica, Maluquer de Motes shows that exceptional wealth and prosperity, which led to the creation of powerful financial institutions as Banco Hispano Colonial in , the General Tobacco Company of the Philippines and the Transatlantic Companyall three the property of Antonio Lopez y Lopez, the Marquis of Comillas, who establishes his headquarters in Barcelona after returning from Cubacould hardly be reached behind the counter of a comer store.

For centuries, slave trade represented an incomparable source of wealth because of its profits. The Spaniards join it later than other nations, but they manage to profit from it probably longer than their colleagues from countries where strong Protestant abolition movements manage to put an end to the infamous trade at the beginning of the nineteenth century. Historians and investigators who write about the participation of the inhabitants of the Peninsula, and particularly of the Catalans, in the slave trade agree that it is inseparable from the whole complex of commerce based on and serving the interests of the growing Cuban sugar industry.

In El Ingenio , Moreno Fraginals explores the development of Cuban sugar industry as based completely on servile labor. However, the Spaniards and the Catalans join the trade later than the. Barcelona, Portuguese, the Dutch, the French and the English. Maluquer de Motes and later Fradera explain this delay by the fact that the Spanish colonial system until the end of the eighteenth century was based almost exclusively on indigenous labor. With the major shift of sugar industry from Saint Domingue to Cuba and Puerto Rico after , and with the devastation of indigenous population in the Spanish Caribbean, the constant bringing of labor hands becomes a necessity.

The policy of plantation owners in Cuba was to bring male slaves capable of enduring the hard work required at the plantations. As a consequence, lack of procreation leads to a constant necessity of new import of slaves from Africa. Fradera sees in it one of the reasons for a certain symbiosis between traders and plantation owners Catalunya i Cuba The Real Orden of January 25, , authorizes all Spanish subjects to participate in slave trade from Spain or any other neutral country. The authorization is legal until September 22, , when Spain and Great Britain sign a treaty, which definitely prohibits slave trade and establishes a transition period until However, as it has happened many times in history, the prohibition leads to an even stronger activity and bigger profits.

Catalan participation in the trade and African traffic, started legally in the last decades of the eighteenth century, is consolidated between and , and achieves its maximum strength and efficiency at the beginning of the forties, after which it gradually declines Moreno Fraginals, El Ingenio ; Fradera, Catalunya i Cuba Fradera calculates that during thirty years of legal trafficking between and , Catalan ships.

The prohibition of traffic critically changes its organization. The enormous profitability of the slave trade is a major factor of attractiveness for the continuation of business after the legal prohibition. Catalan ships set sail from coastal cities carrying such traditional exports as wine, brandy, wax, and dried fruit, and they follow the triangular route stopping at African coasts to pick up the cargo of Africans, victims of endless intertribal wars.


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  6. From there, the live cargo, which after is called bags or coal in log books, proceed to Cuban ports, most frequently to Havana. According to Maluquer de Motes and Fradera, the most important contribution of traffic to the Catalan economy should be examined from the perspective of its integration into Catalan exterior trade. From the first. Sola, Tres notes entom les actituds i valors de l alta burgesia barcelonina a mitjan segle XIX, Quaderns de flnstitut Catala dAntropologia On the other hand, the benefits of overseas trade, in which Cuba played a key role, compensate the permanent deficit of Catalan trade during the nineteenth century generated by expensive imports of European manufactures, energy resources, machinery and food which could not be compensated by interchange with the Spanish interior market.

    Catalan foreign trade, in contrast to other Spanish foreign trade, was based on two poles, colonial and American trade on the one hand, and European trade on the other. The Africans constitute one of the major items of American commerce after wine. Traffic, on the one hand, is a source of profits for a vast circle of Catalan commerce, on the other, is a decisive factor in maintaining a complex system of exterior relations Fradera, Catalunya i Cuba The participation of Catalans in the colonial enterprise and slave trade, which is represented as an inseparable part of this enterprise, becomes the subject of a multifaceted discussion in Catalan society at the end of the twentieth century.

    In the magazine of historic studies LAveny publishes a set of articles about the involvement of the Catalans in slave trade under the title Dossier. In the same magazine, Armengou offers an overview of the iconography of some Catalan negrero ships from the funds of the Maritime Museum of Barcelona. Rovira Fors, Director of the Parrish Archive of Canet de Mar, in an article about the brigantine Tellus built in Canet de Mar and used for slave trafficking, offers his perspective on the participation of Catalans in the slave trade.

    The author comes from a family of veritable sea wolves who, in the nineteenth century, engaged in all types of maritime labor from fishing to coastal sailing or trading. According to this author, the participation in slave expeditions, which was difficult to resist for their great profitability, required certain heroism on behalf of the participants because of the numerous difficulties and perils that this type of ventures involved for their participants. Rovira Fons also argues that the treatment of Africans by their transporters was not always as brutal and inhuman as described in some works of fiction and film: Existf, malauradament, un comportament infrahuman en alguns capitans i tripulacions, pero hi hague-a part de raons humanitaries i etiques que, en alguns casos i encara minimament, deurien funcionar-un interes logic i raonable a no malmetre la mercaderia, i es procurava evitar morts i malalties i que els negres no arribessin fets malbe als ports de destf.

    As early as in , Arturo Masriera points out that there are two types of discourse about. Some authors represent them as humanitarians who care for their merchandise in order to profit from it: Puestos en el piano de un dulce optimismo, anaden estos autores que el negro, al poner el pie en un buque negrero, era alimentado, cuidado y atendido, con solicitud, sino caritativa, por lo menos utilitaria, ya que su valor en el proximo mercado, dependfa del estado de nutrition, salud y lozama con que llegase al mercado.

    Y asf, las duchas, las danzas y conciertos, la alimentation sana y abundante, y hasta las lecciones de lectura y escritura, no faltaban a bordo de los buques negreros. This type of discourse, according to Masriera, starts with their representation in Heinrich Heines poetry that was translated into Catalan in , Antoni Altadills Barcelona v sus misterios,41 and finally, Las inquietudes de Shanti Andfa by Pfo Baroja In a mixture of a mystery and adventure novel reminiscent of Eugene Sue, he is shipwrecked and saved by a ship that transports slaves.

    Thus the young idealistic protagonist gets in contact with the brutal world of the slave trade. The figure of the captain of the ship, a brutal negrero who sells the protagonist into a ten-year slavery in Africa, is contrasted to the idealism of the protagonist.

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    According to Fradera, the figure of the captain evokes the figure of Pedro Blanco, an infamous Spanish negrero La figura del negre Moreno Fraginals characterizes this period as a transition period from British to Spanish trafficking. As an example, the Cuban historian mentions a trip by a Spanish frigate Amistad that took on board seven hundred thirty three slaves in Africa and lost five.

    One can also view this publication of the time of renewed assertion of Catalan identity at the time of the transition to democracy in Spain as one of the sources that continue to nurture the construction of Catalan identity tightly linked to maritime culture: Ser navegant era el rol i la sortida brillant en la vida daquell temps. Una generacio de navegantsagosarada i valenta. Tambe ho foren, anys mes tard, els americanoso indianos; un alter tipus de vida i daventura relacionada amb America i el mar. La generacio dels americanos constitui'ren el veritable suport a la nissaga de fabricants i empresaris de 1epoca industrial.

    In consequence, as Yanez points out, Catalan bourgeoisie becomes a natural ally of the Spanish colonial authorities and major beneficiary of the Spanish colonial system Saltar con red Catalan historians show the grounds. The surviving one hundred eighty eight presented such a deplorable picture that it provoked wrath in doctor Romay who gave them vaccination upon arrival to Havana The frigate Amistad. The revolt of Africans on board of the Amistad in becomes a significant event for the American judicial system.

    In , the story of Amistad becomes the subject of an opera, with music by Anthony Davis and libretto by Thulani Davis, and of an acclaimed film produced by Steven Spielberg in The decade of the s is marked by the weakening of Catalan immigration to Cuba, on the one hand, and by the development of Catalan industrial capital, on the other.

    In the Catalan discourse of the late twentieth century, following the ideas of Vicens Vives and Vilar, nineteenth-century Catalonia is represented as a center that accumulates financial capitals generated in the colonies. The growing accumulation in Catalonia of financial capital created in the colonies is so strong that in the s it provokes a fear among the contemporaries of converting Cuba into a Catalan factory.

    Catalan historiography explores a whole set of factors which affect the changes that characterize participation of the Catalans in the colonial venture at the end of the nineteenth century. One of these factors is the. Desde aquel momento, y en tanto durase el contrato, todos los productos obtenidos en las mismas quedaban a disposicion del delegado. La sociedad nombro una serie de agentes en las diversas aduanas para fiscalizar las operaciones.

    Podia nombrar tambien los auxiliares que creyese oportunos para que la contabilidad de aduanas se llevase al dfa y con exactitud. Tenfa tambien derecho a proponer el ministro de Ultramar el cese de cualquier empleado de aduanas y el nombramiento de otros nuevos[ Another crucial factor is the cotton hunger provoked by the Civil War in the United States, which leads to the temporal stagnation of the Catalan textile industry and the subsequent crash of the Barcelona stock exchange in However, the crucial event for the relationship between the metropolis and the loyal colony is the first war for Cuban independence , the following years of instability, and the colonys final rupture with the metropolis in As was their habit, Catalan protectionists blamed its disappearance on the refusal of the Madrid government to protect national shipping; in fact most Catalan shippers lacked the capital to finance the change from sail to steam The figure of El Pigat deserves special mention.

    In , his native town chooses him and his legendary mistress La Lucfa, a mulatto woman allegedly brought by him from the Caribbean, to be the prototypes for the gigantic figures that represent their town during annual festival processions, festes majors see fig. Mas i Roig is also one of the protagonists of the three part documentary Retrats dindians produced by the Catalan network TV-3 and first aired on July 11, 18 and 25, We will discuss the representation of El Pigat and La Lucfa in Chapter Two while exploring the representation of the relationship between Catalan men and Cuban women in the cultural imaginary of Catalonia.

    In Cuba, voluntary immigration, motivated by factors of attractiveness, is replaced by a massive arrival of soldiers recruited by the Spanish government or participating in the volunteer troops. During the years of the wars in Cuba between and , many immigrants remigrate to the United States, New Orleans in particular.

    The financial capital, however, as Vicens Vives argues, tends to return to Catalonia, thus leading to the creation of prosperous industries in Catalonia based on financial capital generated in the colonies Noticia de Cataluna Maluquer de Motes argues, however, that not only the above mentioned financial giants but also small merchants, owners of bodegas, ship owners and officials return to Catalonia with relatively important fortunes La burguesfa catalana According to Raymond Carr, by , sixty percent of the Catalan export trade was to Cuba.

    Therefore the loss of the colony seemed to threaten economic disaster in Catalonia Spain Financial interests of the Catalan conservative bourgeoisie deeply rooted in Cuba lead to their loyalty and defense of Spanish An. The Catalan bourgeoisie viciously protects its interests in Cuba. One of its ideologists is Joan Giiell i Ferrer, a successful proprietor and entrepreneur, whose fortune created in Cuba was invested in Catalonia. He is the founder of the dynasty that later, at the beginning of the twentieth century, patronizes the work of Antoni Gaudf in Barcelona, including the Parc Giiell.

    A man of many talents, Giiell i Ferrer publishes a number of pamphlets, which clearly express the positions of the Catalan bourgeoisie of the time, and put him into a position of a strong defender of integral protectionism and, as a consequence, of the Spanish colonial system. Maluquer de Motes quotes the pamphlet Rebelion Cubana, published by Giiell i Ferrer in , in which the latter argues that Cuban independence was not only unjustified, but also not convenient for Cuba. According to Giiell i Ferrer, the vast majority of Cuban revolutionaries were adventurers and people without fortune que tenfan horror al trabajo y escesivo sic amor a los goces, y quieren obtenerlos pronto y sin fatiga qtd.

    The Catalan bourgeoisie was willing to pay the price of maintaining Spanish troops in. The demand for the restoration of protection became, in the seventies and eighties, the demand of all classes in Catalonia. Backed by the most powerful pressure group in modem Spain, the Fomento del Trabajo Nacional, the crusade was preached with all the moral overtones characteristic of the early free traders Carr mentions such groups of powerful interests as the agriculturalists of the Institute of San Isidro and the industrialists of the Fomento del Trabajo Nacional, who set up a Permanent Commission for the Defense of Spanish Interests in Cuba Spain Moreno Maso mentions that Catalan financial moguls invested 39, pesos duros.

    The list of sponsors opens with the name of Antonio Lopez y Lopez,48 whose company, the famous Compania Transatlantica, will carry Spanish troops to Cuba during the war, and contains the names of other outstanding financial figures such as Salvador Sama i Torrents, Josep M. Sarra and Joan Jover i Serra, whose capitals are directly connected to Cuba.

    Public opinion and the press conduct a vast recruiting campaign. Moreno Maso quotes a promotional leaflet designed to present the campaign as a short-term triumphant war against the corrupted children of the mother country: alia en Cuba, hijos espureos de la Madre Patria, raza degenerada y corrompida, asestan sus punales contra los buenos espanoles con la mas perfida ingratitud, la mas infame rebelion.

    Los Batallones de Voluntarios Catalanes volveran victoriosos, cubiertos de gloria y vuestras madres os recibiran orgullosas The participation in the Voluntary Battalions is represented by the military propaganda of the time as an advantage over being recruited to the regular army, for The protagonism of Lopez y Lopez in the creation of Catalan industrial capital based on colonial trade has become an icon of the links uniting Catalonia and overseas colonies.

    The controversy and the revelation of Lopez y Lopezs involvement in slave traffic are in the center of attention since the first openly critical biography written by his brother-in-law Francisco Bru in It is especially attractive for those who lose their jobs because of the stagnation of cotton and railway construction industries in Catalonia at the time.

    The Spanish goal of formally maintaining Cuba as its colony was achieved after nine and a half years of devastating guerrilla warfare in a tropical climate where infectious diseases, insects and climatic conditions were the natural and undoubted allies of the mambises, the Cuban insurrects.

    Specifically, the case of the Voluntary Battalions, according to Moreno Maso, is exceptionally tragic.