The Battle over Spanish between 1800 and 2000: Language Ideologies and Hispanic Intellectuals

By José Del Valle; Luis Gabriel-Stheeman | Go to book overview

2

Linguistic anti-academicism and Hispanic community

Sarmiento and Unamuno

Barry L. Velleman

Toda la actividad política y cultural del siglo XIX hispanoamericano está relacionada con el proyecto de construcción de las naciones, y el planteamiento de la cuestión de la lengua (dimension simbólica de su uso, normas orales o escritas, representación gráfica, etc.) es inseparable de la problemática de la identidad nacional. 1

(Arnoux and Lois 1996:1)


Sarmiento, the Generation of 1837, and Spain

The writers known as Argentina's Generation of 1837 have been called "perhaps the most articulate and self-conscious group of Latin American intellectuals" of their century (Katra 1996:7). Juan Bautista Alberdi, Esteban Echeverría, Juan María Gutiérrez, and Domingo F. Sarmiento, all born during the period 1805-11, were the children of Argentina's independence from Spain (1810-16) and witnesses to the struggles of their country's troubled post-colonial era. As Argentina attempted to become a modern nation, its intellectual and political leaders were divided on various political and cultural matters. There were, for example, conflicts between the Unitarians, who favored the centralization of cultural and political hegemony in Buenos Aires, and the Federalists, who argued for a broad sociopolitical base in which the interior provinces played a stronger role. Also, defenders of traditional Hispanic values struggled against those who attempted to impose liberal European ideals, especially those of France. For Sarmiento, the revolution had served to bring about yet another confrontation, in this case between two opposing elements which were already present in pre-independence Argentine society: barbarism and civilization.

Habia ántes de 1810 en la República Arjentina dos sociedades distintas, rivales e incompatibles; dos civilizaciones diversas; la una española europea culta, i la otra bárbara, americana, casi indíjena; i la revolución de las ciudades solo iba a servir de causa, de móvil, para que estas dos maneras distintas de ser de un pueblo se pusiesen en presencia una de

-14-

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The Battle over Spanish between 1800 and 2000: Language Ideologies and Hispanic Intellectuals
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Biographical Notes ix
  • Preface xii
  • Acknowledgments xiv
  • 1 - Nationalism, Hispanismo, and Monoglossic Culture 1
  • 2 - Linguistic Anti-Academicism and Hispanic Community 14
  • 3 - The Ideological Construction of an Empirical Base 42
  • 4 - Historical Linguistics and Cultural History 64
  • 5 - Menéndez Pidal, National Regeneration and the Linguistic Utopia 78
  • 6 - "For Their Own Good" 106
  • 7 - A Nobleman Grabs the Broom 134
  • 8 - José María Arguedas 167
  • 9 - "Codo Con Codo" 193
  • References 217
  • Index 231
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