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20 Pages

Blocked Articulation and Nationalist Hegemony in Catalonia

ByThomas Jeffrey Miley

This article focuses on the representation of preferences with regards to language policy in Catalonia. By comparing social surveys produced by a variety of organizations with its own data, this paper demonstrates that there is a substantial gap between the political preferences of significant segments of the general population of Catalonia and the political preferences of their representatives at the Parliament of Catalonia. In particular, the language policy implemented by the Catalan elites is not consistent with the preferences of Castilian-speaking working-class citizens. The article identifies two mechanisms of ‘blocked articulation’ which serve to impede the representation of the preferences of these voters in the region’s representative institutions. These mechanisms are: (1) the under-representation of Castilian-speakers in the region’s representative institutions; and (2) the partial assimilation of elected Castilian-speakers into the attitudes and preferences of the Catalan-speaking, hegemonic fraction of the political establishment.