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Home » Archive » The Catalan Affaire In A Constitutional Perspective. From Reasonable Arguments To Identity-Based Claims: Squandering Legitimacy Resources

Giuliano Vosa
The Catalan Affaire In A Constitutional Perspective. From Reasonable Arguments To Identity-Based Claims: Squandering Legitimacy Resources
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The Catalan issue has come again to perturb the Spanish institutional and sociopolitical environment. It seems to follow constant historical patterns referring to the manifold matrix of the Catalan movement and leading to a radicalisation of opposite nationalist claims. The most serious crisis of the last decades has brought the King and the Constitutional Court into the scene. However, increasing institutional complexity has been of little help in smoothing out plausible solutions to the problems arisen; to the contrary, it has brought about a dissipation of institutional resources, as those organs have been incapable of preventing the radicalisation of the conflict. The article looks at the recent controversies in a threefold perspective – the political debate, the King’s sovereign stance, and the position of the Constitutional Court – in light of the multifaceted composition of the Catalan movement. It argues that the reiterated confrontation of identity-based claims has suffocated the negotiations on the merits by replacing rational arguments with emotional ones based on non-dialogable identity claims; this has squandered the legitimacy resources of the Spanish constitutional system, which is now in urgent need of a new begin.

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