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

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

9

"Codo con codo"

Hispanic community and the language spectacle

José del Valle and Luis Gabriel-Stheeman


So…?

No puede haber mayor concordia que el diálogo, el entendimiento, la comprensión para el respeto y la paz, y el instrumento fundamental, esencial, es la lengua, y las entidades que representan la lengua desde una perspectiva digamos oficial son las academias. 1

(Ignacio Chávez quoted in El País, 7 September 2000)

The careful reader may discern, in the background from which this image of language emerges, the shadowy silhouette of the Other. The image of harmony rendered by the existence of a Spanish-speaking community throughout the "mundo hispánico" forces to the margins the reality of the peripheral Peninsular tongues, the Latin American indigenous languages, and all contact varieties across the continent; it alienates them, it makes them unable to contribute to that harmonious dialogue.

In the past two centuries, Latin American nations and Spain have been involved in various processes of community construction: The creation of national cultures in a post-independence context; the development of the political and social institutions of the modern nation; the articulation of intellectual projects of cultural regeneration; and the post-colonial construction of a supranational Hispanic community. As we saw in the preceding chapters, these cultural, political and social contexts associated with community-building processes are closely intertwined with the language ideologies of Hispanic intellectuals.

One conclusion that can be drawn from the previous analyses is that these authors' visions of language shared certain fundamental principles, since they were all the product of the same monoglossic culture. They all assumed that peaceful coexistence within communities is possible inasmuch as they possess a stable and minimally variable linguistic system, and that this system must be known and accepted by those who belong or wish to belong. Consequently, they found that the specific projects of community-building in which they were engaged required the development and control of a

-193-

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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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