dimecres, 23 de setembre de 2009

Reason 19: Only way to have 500 magazines in Catalan

The picture you see here will be the normal situation in a Catalan magazine store in the future. Today this is fiction.

I was in the airport of Barcelona walking around and entered a magazine store. There were so many magazines. There are magazines for any aspect of human life, for each sport, for furniture, interior design, hair, fashion, crime, gossip, etc.
Seeking for magazines in my mother tongue I realized that 99,9% of the magazines in this store were all in Spanish language. I asked the cashier if she knew how many magazines there were in her shop but she did not know the answer. I only found two magazines in Catalan language. Hundreds in Spanish.
I made a picture with my mobile phone and left. I had found a new reason why Catalonia must become an independent state in Europe.
Once in Amsterdam I sat down behind my computer and made a search to find out how many Dutch magazines there are. 1859 magazines, all in Dutch language.
I have been in several countries and I know that independent states, even with less inhabitants than Catalonia, have several magazines, all in the state’s main language.
In the Netherlands (country that became independent from Spain in 1581 and as a result of that enjoyed an incredible prosperity during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries) there are 1859 maganizes, all in Dutch. With a population of 16 million and a similar size to Catalonia, it is compulsory to learn the Dutch language in order to become naturalized in the Netherlands . Sweden has about 460 magazines, a population of only 9 million inhabitants. In Sweden the Swedish language is even compulsory to get a job, even without getting naturalized. Obviously Catalonia does not enjoy the power of decision to protect its culture as independent states have. But even more important than this is the automatic status a culture gets once it ha the status of an independent country.
This because most multinationals divide the world markets by the states in which they operate and do not contemplate the stateless cultures unless they have a strong federal characer, such as Belgium. An clear example of this is Apple computers, that has its headquarters in Madrid and neglects repetedly Catalan consumer needs, even though more people speak Catalan than Norwegian or Finish. Companies that develop their markets from a cultural point of view will be more succesful and will do better business because they adapt better to the cultural realities of each cultural area. Unfortunately most multinationals don’t do that. They see us as part of the Spanish market. And as long as we purchase their magazines in Spanish language we are being our own enemy. Catalan people should not purchase maganizes or papers in Spanish language in order to protect and stimulate the development of magazines in Catalan language. As long as we act as part of the Spanish market we will never be able to develop a normal situation. On the other hand it is too easy to blame only the Catalans for this, after all, we want to live a normal life and enjoy life. Even though many of us might prefer a Catalan magazine or Catalan Wii games, we do end up purchasing them in Spanish language rather than not purchasing them at all.
This unfortunate situation affects badly the development of the Catalan language.
Magazines are automatic development language tools and a language without magazines is an unhealthy language. As a result of this many Catalans have to use Spanish for words they don’t know in Catalan because they simply never appear anywhere, car parts, all kind of specialised products are only labelled in Spanish language and the magazines that talk about these products are only in Spanish. This makes Catalan language poor and dependent on Spanish language (and French in north Catalonia).
The independence of Catalonia will solve this problem in just a day! The day we have an independent state we’ll be able to develop an own market with a Catalan point of view in which the Catalan language will be able to develop itself independently from the Spanish or French languages. And this will help the economy too.
Obviously nor Norway (that got independence from Sweden in 1905) or Finland (that got independence from Russia in 1917) would have as many magazines as today in own language if they still were regions of Sweden and Russia respectively. Only independence will save the Catalan language and its normal use in society.

5 comentaris:

maria mp ha dit...
Un administrador del blog ha eliminat aquest comentari.
Miquel Marzabal Galano ha dit...

Yes, there were many Spaniards also in the side of the Republicans (and democracy and freedom) but Franco and fascism was not only against these values, it was and still is against my culture and my language, not yours. It has and still is trying to destroy my culture and my language, not yours.
I have said this before. It is not the same, babe. Absolutely NOT.
I consider myself a defendor of human and animal rights, democracy, freedom, I speak 7 languages and I consider myself a very open minded person, tolerant. As I am a Catalan and Gay and I know very well what is to be descriminated by others. That's why I try not to descriminate other people, other beliefs, other languages. I consider myself a defendor of minorities such as the Sami, Tibetans, Berbers, Kurds... as I understand very well what is going on there, who is doing it and why.
And you say I am the key of the problem? Perhaps YOU are the key to the problem.
What do you know about me? What are your assumptions about me?
I think you are mixing things and that you are making very wrong assumptions about me. But I SHALL NOT SPEAK ABOUT ME IN THIS BLOG. NO WAY. AND I SHALL NOT ALLOW ANY ATTACKS TO MY PERSON HERE WHAT SO EVER. SO PISS OFF.

Miquel Marzabal Galano ha dit...

When people don't have arguments they start to use the force of violence, insulting, prohibiting.
I will not tolerate insults or attacks to my person here.
If you have arguments (as you seemed to have in the first half of your comment, use them, thank you. If you don't have arguments and you want to attack me personally get out of here. I will not publish anything that is not strictly counter arguments of what I am explaining here. This blog is not about me. I will only speak about the content of my blog, not about me.
Best regards.

Croilir ha dit...

Hi, i read parts of your blog with great interest and it reminds me strongly to the situation in former Yugoslavia. We Croats also had to suffer from Serbian centralism. We developped greatly after independence. I'm pretty sure, that Catalonia and the Basque County will become independent in 10 yrs or so. How are the polls? How many people in Catalonia want their independence? Do you have any figures? And: What about Valencia and the Baleares, are they willing to join Catalonia or is it rather possible that they want to remain under Madrid?
Cool, just understood want meant:"Enviar els comentaris de seguiment per correu electrònic a jayzet@gmx.ch" :-)

Miquel Marzabal Galano ha dit...

The polls are unfortunatelly done by partial media. I have lived in Holland for 18 years. The first years I did not have Internet and I kind of forgot. The Catalan and Spanish media are all strongly influenced by political parties. It seems incredible to me, but there isn't a Catalan or Spanish paper or TV channel strongly connected to a political party, ruled by them as a tool to manipulate. And unfortunately there are many different 'polls' but which one of them is impartial? none.
A significant detail: two papers which are ruled by parties which are against independence such as El Periodico and La Vanguardia said in the last poll, december 2009
48% would vote yes. 35% no.

La Vanguardia (also against independence) comes with a similar result.

This should make one think that the truth should be even more favourable to independence.

What the majority of Catalans want, without doubt is to know the truth. And we shall know the truth only the day we do a binding referendum of independence.

All polls are partial and manipulated.

I think Valencia, Balearic Islands and North Catalonia shall remain under Spain for some time. Only if they see clear advantages of becoming part of a Catalan federation they shall move towards freedom. But the composition of the Valencian, Balearic or North Catalan societies is very different than that of Catalonia. As far as I know the Catalan speakers in Valencia and North Catalonia are a minority in their own territories.
The Balearic Islands are a strange case. They seem kind of happy by being ruled by foreigners, they accept the military supremacy of others. Perhaps it is in their DNA after several hundreds of years of being taken over by diverse imperial military forces (Romans, Arabs, Catalans, Spanish, British and now the Spanish again).