A presentation by Dr Fernando León Solís.
This presentation will show how in Spain Brexit was seen as a threat to a European project, regarded as a product of the reality-based rationality of the Enlightenment. However, one of the most salient factors in the Spanish media coverage is related to the internal political life of the country, and, as a result, there was no homogeneous Spanish view. Instead, a range of ideologically-grounded interpretations were produced in which the independence of Catalonia featured as highly as the future of the European Union. For the Madrid-based press and part of the Catalan media, the pro-Brexit camp were ‘nationalist populists’, led by emotion, lies and propaganda. This reaction against nationalistic populism should be seen as a reaction against the newly formed left-wing coalition Podemos and Catalan nationalism, both of which were denounced for their defence of a referendum as a means to solve the independence question in Catalonia. This position was accompanied by a defence of Representative Democracy. The pro-independence and pro-referendum Catalan press maintained a firm defence of referenda as a legitimate mechanism of expression of the democratic convictions of the people. Important as the referendum was for the future of the EU and its implications for Spain, this presentation shows how this event was used as a proxy for a national debate on an unresolved constitutional issue.
More information to come soon.