The lecturers Patrizio Rigobon, of Ca’ Foscari University in Venice, and Jordi Larios, of Queen Mary University of London, analysed the vitality of Catalan studies at universities abroad. The conversation took place as part of the Conversations at the Llull and Josep-Anton Fernàndez of the Open University of Catalonia was in the chair. Rigobon pointed out that “Catalan studies in Italy are closely linked to Romance philology” and “are growing significantly and periodic congresses are being organised”.
Jordi Larios shares the view that Catalan studies are on the rise. Indeed, he claimed that “Catalan as a foreign language can often have more students than Russian or German. And so Catalan studies at many international universities are not minority”. He also said that “a Catalan teacher abroad is often engaged in cultural activism, and that often means that he has less time for university research”.
As part of the event there was a presentation of the book La cara fosca de la cultura catalana. La col·laboració amb el feixisme i la dictadura franquista (The dark side of Catalan culture. Collaboration with fascism and the Franco dictatorship) by Jordi Larios, published by Lleonard Muntaner, and the third number of the Rivista Italiana di Studi Catalani of the Associazione Italiana di Studi Catalani.
Today there are more than 150 universities around the world teaching Catalan and more than 6,000 students following Catalan language and culture courses. The Institut Ramon Llull promotes advanced studies and research through study centres and chairs for visiting lecturers at universities of recognised prestige, com such as the Centre d’Estudis Catalans at the Sorbonne in Paris or the Rodoreda Chair at the City University of New York (CUNY) Graduate Center. In that way studies of Catalan language and culture are promoted at universities abroad and the IRL signs agreements for their introduction or consolidation.
At the Conversations at the Llull the speakers agree that Catalan studies are not minority
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