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Opinion

Guillem Viladot does not deserve this disgrace, Mr. Aragonese

Guillem Viladot does not deserve this disgrace, Mr. Aragonese

The controversy caused in recent days by the Generalitat's refusal to officially commemorate the Guillem Viladot Centenary has many edges. I would like to expose some of them.

But there is an incontrovertible one: by the Department of Culture and by the Generalitat in weight (since the official commemorations hang from the Presidency).

Guillem Viladot is a second category figure .

Viladot does not appear in the selection of official commemorations made by the government in the field of culture. But it proves even more that, given that this exclusion has been received as a slap in the face in the West and in many sectors of Catalan philology and culture, a platform quickly appeared that drafted a manifesto ( you can read it and sign here ) to which more than one thousand five hundred people have joined so far (a not inconsiderable figure in a field such as culture and in the midst of the Christmas festivities). And it was then, and only then, that the Department of Culture ran to make an ugly statement (an ugly statement is a failed statement) where it came to say that we should not worry, that the centenary of the writer of Ponent would be celebrated. , but with considerable reductions. That is, he was now considered a second-rate centenarian.

A few hours later, an additional note was posted on the Generalitat's website commemorating the official centenaries in which it was said that a commemoration of the centenary of Viladot's birth would also be held (I emphasize the adverb) given the rooting of the character in a given Catalan territory. In other words, the Viladot Centenary would be taken into account ( also ) but not officially.

And from there, the edges I was referring to come out. To start with the end: it turns out that the centenary of Viladot is presented by the Generalitat as second-rate because it would only have been important in the territories of Lleida. Oh, damn it! But, assuming this were true, isn't Ponent part of Catalonia? Doesn't what happens there transcend the strict framework of that territory?

No, it is not true: he did not confine himself to the local culture of Agramunt (assuming that this was not something important in itself), or to that of the lands of Lleida. Therefore, a bastardized truth is inferred: in the culture department they don't know who Viladot was; otherwise, they would know that he published in several Barcelona publishing houses, that he maintained intellectual relations with various Catalan personalities (Western or not) and international, and that he was a broad-spectrum character who, wherever he went, decided not living in Barcelona permanently (although he studied there and had a flat where he often went, I don't know if this can count as a nuisance).

If this were not enough to discredit such a centralist and provincial approach, let us note that, among those chosen to hold an official commemoration, is the Ateneu Barcelonès, whose action it is clear that it has had throughout its history is a selective territorial root, that of the city of Barcelona; especially among the members of the Barcelona bourgeoisie who were its members. That the Athenaeum deserves an official commemoration? Of course. Like Viladot, not because he did not live in Barcelona, but precisely because he voluntarily chose to make Ponent an alternative to the cultural circles that ruled Catalonia and that, apparently, continue to do so.

More arrests on the outrage caused by the decision of the Department of Culture and the presidency of the Generalitat. One that is an endemic problem that I have already begun to insinuate: the forgetfulness of the culture that emerged from the West and, even more, that of creators who, like Viladot, are not very sympathetic to power, the one before and the one of now. Let's be clear:

If Viladot does not deserve the commemoration of an official centenary, what other creator of Ponent will deserve it according to the criteria of the official, centralist and short-sighted cenacles?

They are telling us that only those who publish in Barcelona's newspapers are important for Catalan culture; that only if you do exhibitions in the art centers of Barcelona do you show relevance? Then maybe instead of doing newspapers and magazines in counties; or to promote the existence of art centers throughout the territory, we better close everything and, yes, increase the fluency and intensity of public transport to go to the capital, where we will be instructed in benevolence of true Catalan culture, not the peasant, ruca, shameless and papissota.

And finally, the last edge of all. That goes for procedures. It seems that the concession of the official commemorations is decided through a commission of which I have not been able to know the exact nominal composition (in this, the page of the Generalitat is incomprehensibly inconcrete). By the way, the Ateneu Barcelonès is part of this commission and, wherever you go, one of the commemorations has been for the famous Barcelona institution. Doesn’t anyone see any ethical issues where someone is part of a committee that decides to reward that someone? And in this commission also has a vote Omnium: perhaps it would also be good that this institution that has headquarters throughout the territory (if I'm not mistaken Omnium La Segarra-Urgell has voted in favor of the centenary official Viladot, first class, signing the manifesto to which I have alluded before; and Òmnium Lleida-Ponent, also) explained its position on the matter. Can't find it? Why the "central" management has not come out to defend the official commemoration of the centenary of Viladot unequivocally, in the end it is a matter of expanding in one character more than had been planned.

In conclusion, they have turned something logical, that Viladot is an interesting character (last year an exhibition was shown at the Joan Brossa Foundation in Barcelona where this was in evidence), into a political problem. And it is the politicians who have to fix it without excuses and statements that spoil the thing more than it already is. Because if you allow me a sports simile, in Barcelona they have decided unilaterally that Viladot is in the second division, and this has not been decided on the pitch, they have fixed it in the offices. And in the offices they have to fix it.

Original article published in Pensacions de Joan Minguet Batllori

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