Occitan nationalism

Occitan nationalism is a social and political movement in Occitania. Nationalists seek self-determination, greater autonomy or the creation of a sovereign state of Occitania. The basis of nationalism is linguistic and cultural although currently the Occitan varieties are minority languages within the language area.

Flag of Occitania with star
Map of Occitania in Occitan language, with the main cities

The territories claimed under the Occitan nation represent a large part of southern France, Monaco, parts of Spain (Val d'Aran), and Italy (Occitan Valleys, Guardia Piemontese).

Occitan nationalism in recent yearsEdit

Occitanist event in Carcassona in 2005.
Demonstration in Besièrs in 2007: (We are a people. Occitan official language!)
Demonstration in Barcelona in 2012: (Free Occitania)
Nationalist graffiti. Reads "Occitania free!"

Occitan nationalism re-appears as a reaction of injustice in the regions of southern France in the face of the economic and energy restructuring undertaken by the Gaullists ruling in the 1960s, which gave priority to the most prosperous regions of the northern country. In 1962, the French government decided in a completely arbitrary way to close the mining and industrial complex of La Sala, a fact which then became regarded as the catalyst of the modern Occitan claims.[1]

Then, from 1968, Occitan cultural rebirth combined with economic protest led to a nationalist claim that Occitania was an inner colony of the centralist French state.[2] Although there was an Occitan nationalist current, the unionism with the leftist French won. This is why Lucha Occitana defines Occitania as a popular nationality, that is to say as a nation in the making. Lucha Occitana objected, ideologically speaking, to the nationalism of the Partit de la Nacion Occitana: the Occitan nation being a starting point for the Partit de la Nacion Occitana, then it was a point of arrival for Lucha Occitana.

From the 1973 oil crisis, the evolution of the international economic situation will change the game for several decades. The economic crisis that followed the end of Trente Glorieuses will affect all France. In the same way as the other nationalist movements of the rest of the France and Europe, the core of the claims focused on cultural identity and right of minorities.

The Occitan nationalism of the 1980s lost its influence on society mainly because of the fragmentation of parties and organizations between different ideologies, as well as the inability to articulate a romantic nationalism covering such a large territory[3] with a heterogeneous social reality.

In the 1990s, the political movement could be described as marginal within Occitanism.

Recently Occitan nationalism is renewed, we can mention:

Moreover, the linguistic aspect is one of the most important claims of Occitan nationalism, as well as "Occitan regionalism" and various civic movements in Occitania. In this area, many political advances on the recognition of Occitan language have recently resulted. We can cite:

  • Obtaining the status of protected linguistic minority in Italy in 1999.
  • The events focused on the defense of Occitan since 2005 in France.
  • The officialization of Occitan throughout Catalonia (Spain) in 2006, reinforced by a law adopted in 2010.
  • Recognitions as language of the department in the Pyrénées-Orientales in 2007, and language of the region in Rhône-Alpes in 2009.
  • The various initiatives for the language of Aquitaine, Midi-Pyrénées, Languedoc-Roussillon and Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur regions.
  • The treatment of Occitan claims at the level of the European Parliament on 22 November 2012.[18]

Territorial claimsEdit

The following table shows the size and population of the territories claimed by the Occitan nationalism is as follows:

Country Territory claimed Area
Population (year)
  Aran Valley (Catalonia) 634 9,993 (2014)
  Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes (Allier and former Rhône-Alpes, Ardèche and Drôme) 30,372 1,829,328 (2013)
  New Aquitaine (except French Basque Country and former Poitou-Charentes, but includes Charente) 55,283 3,755,705 (2013)
  Occitanie (except Pyrénées-Orientales) 68,608 5,221,173 (2013)
  Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur 31,400 4,953,675 (2013)
  Guardia Piemontese (Calabria) 21 1,895 (2015)
  (Liguria)   (Piedmont) Occitan Valleys 4,500 174,476 (2013)
  Monaco 2 38,400 (2015)
Occitania 190,986 15,984,645

Political partiesEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "In pays d'Oc, one generally dates the beginning of the complex and timid process of convergence between social demands, Occitanism and the leftist opinion of the La Sala miners in 1961-62" page 304. Jean Sagnes, Le midi rouge, Éditions Anthropos, 1982, 310 pages. Reprint Le midi rouge, mythe et réalité. Étude d'histoire occitane, Economica (21 June 1999), HISTOIRE ET SOC, ISBN 2715710569 ISBN 978-2715710566
  2. ^ A. Valente Contreras Romero (2006), "Volem Viure: le nationalisme occitan dans le sud de la France.", Politique et Culture, ISSN 0188-7742
  3. ^ Between the third or the half of France plus different border regions
  4. ^ Lo lugarn number 99/2009, page 23
  5. ^ "Support of the Party of the Occitan Nation". Archived from the original on 10 January 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2018.
  6. ^ "Support of the Catalan Republican Party". Archived from the original on 10 January 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2018.
  7. ^ "Support of the Languedoc Regionalists". Archived from the original on 10 January 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2018.
  8. ^ "Support of the Occitan Republican Left-wing". Archived from the original on 10 January 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2018.
  9. ^ We note the adhesion of the Occitan Party to the federation Regions and Peoples with Solidarity at the French level and at the European Free Alliance (EFA-EFA) at European level.
  10. ^ "Toulouse / Cinq élus pour le Patit Occitan". Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 13 October 2012.
  11. ^ Election results on the POC website
  12. ^ Val d'Aran wants more autonomy
  13. ^ Pro-Occitan candidates to stand for 2014 local election in 100 municipalities under Bastir! banner|lang=en
  14. ^ "Toulouse. Le mouvement occitan Bastir a validé ses candidats" [The Occitan movement Bastir has validated its candidates]. La Dépêche du Midi. 3 February 2014. Retrieved 8 September 2020.
  15. ^ Map of Bastir candidates! – 2014 Municipal
  16. ^ Bastir! in Agen, South-West of 16 December 2013, in the press releases of the POL (Partit de la Nacion Occitana)
  17. ^ Site of the List "Occitania for a Europe of the Peoples"
  18. ^ The Occitan in the European Parlament "If France was not in the EU, it would not be possible to enter because it does not comply with the Copenhagen criteria for minorities" – Jornalet|language=Occitan