Galicia, a non-state nation in north-west Spain, has often been portrayed as a sentimental nation, a misty land of poets and legends. This book offers the first study of this trope as a feminizing, colonial stereotype that has marked Galician cultural history since the late nineteenth century. Through a close reading of the main texts of Galician literary history, the author shows how this trope has helped sustain the unequal power relation between Galicia and the Spanish State. As a consequence, questions of masculinity, morality and respectability have played an essential role in Galicia's national construction, thereby enforcing a masculine definition and limiting the role of women. This book argues for a revision of the main texts of Galician cultural nationalism through a gender and postcolonial perspective, showing that contemporary portrayals of Galician history are dependent on the politically debilitating trope of Galician sentimentality.
Helena Miguelez-Carballeira is a lecturer in Hispanic studies and director of the Centre for Galician Studies at Bangor University.
IIntroduction: When Did We Become Sentimental? Colonial Stereotype, National Discourse and Gender in Galicia and Spain Chapter One: Shaping Galician Femininity: Method, Metaphor and Myth in Augusto Gonzalez Besada's Cultural Writing Chapter Two: Purifying the National Model: Questions of Morality and Sentimentality in Eugenio Carre Aldao's Writing Chapter Three: Competing Manhoods: Political Nationalism vs. Sentimental Regionalism in Antonio Couceiro Freijomil Chapter Four: Sexing the National Father: Between Promiscuity and Decorum in Ricardo Carvalho Calero Chapter Five: Breaking Out of the Normal: From Pineirismo to Normalization in Contemporary Galician Culture Afterword: The Man Who Married Galicia: Towards a Postcolonial Critique of Galician Sentimentality