The historical background of Catalan separatism: The case of Occitania


House of Barcelona
Catalan Occitan campaign
Occitan-Catalan cultural circle
Counts of Barcelona
Great Occitan War


The purpose of this study is to discuss the originality of the Catalan literature at its beginnings in relation to the poetry of the Occitan troubadours, and to explain why some Catalans today do not feel connected to the Castilian heritage. The paper presents the Occitan-Catalan political and cultural relations in the time between 993 and 1213, with particular emphasis on the 12th century when the Great Occitan War took place. The historical Occitania at that time was divided into numerous principalities affected by constant internal struggles. That unstable political situation encouraged powerful neighbours – as the rulers from the House of Barcelona – to attain their domination over the region. The successful military and diplomatic engagements of the Catalan sovereigns allowed them to create a relatively homogeneous Occitan-Catalan community based on cultural similarity and feudal dependence.