Impressionism is a 19th-century art movement characterized by small, yet visible brush strokes, open composition, emphasis on accurate depiction of light in its changing qualities, ordinary subject matter, inclusion of movement as a crucial element of human perception and experience, unusual visual angles. Impressionism originated with a group of Paris-based artists whose independent exhibitions brought them to prominence during the 1870s and 1880s; the Impressionists faced harsh opposition from the conventional art community in France. The name of the style derives from the title of a Claude Monet work, soleil levant, which provoked the critic Louis Leroy to coin the term in a satirical review published in the Parisian newspaper Le Charivari; the development of Impressionism in the visual arts was soon followed by analogous styles in other media that became known as impressionist music and impressionist literature. Radicals in their time, early Impressionists violated the rules of academic painting.
They constructed their pictures from brushed colours that took precedence over lines and contours, following the example of painters such as Eugène Delacroix and J. M. W. Turner, they painted realistic scenes of modern life, painted outdoors. Still lifes and portraits as well as landscapes were painted in a studio; the Impressionists found that they could capture the momentary and transient effects of sunlight by painting outdoors or en plein air. They portrayed overall visual effects instead of details, used short "broken" brush strokes of mixed and pure unmixed colour—not blended smoothly or shaded, as was customary—to achieve an effect of intense colour vibration. Impressionism emerged in France at the same time that a number of other painters, including the Italian artists known as the Macchiaioli, Winslow Homer in the United States, were exploring plein-air painting; the Impressionists, developed new techniques specific to the style. Encompassing what its adherents argued was a different way of seeing, it is an art of immediacy and movement, of candid poses and compositions, of the play of light expressed in a bright and varied use of colour.
The public, at first hostile came to believe that the Impressionists had captured a fresh and original vision if the art critics and art establishment disapproved of the new style. By recreating the sensation in the eye that views the subject, rather than delineating the details of the subject, by creating a welter of techniques and forms, Impressionism is a precursor of various painting styles, including Neo-Impressionism, Post-Impressionism and Cubism. In the middle of the 19th century—a time of change, as Emperor Napoleon III rebuilt Paris and waged war—the Académie des Beaux-Arts dominated French art; the Académie was the preserver of traditional French painting standards of style. Historical subjects, religious themes, portraits were valued; the Académie preferred finished images that looked realistic when examined closely. Paintings in this style were made up of precise brush strokes blended to hide the artist's hand in the work. Colour was restrained and toned down further by the application of a golden varnish.
The Académie had an annual, juried art show, the Salon de Paris, artists whose work was displayed in the show won prizes, garnered commissions, enhanced their prestige. The standards of the juries represented the values of the Académie, represented by the works of such artists as Jean-Léon Gérôme and Alexandre Cabanel. In the early 1860s, four young painters—Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Alfred Sisley, Frédéric Bazille—met while studying under the academic artist Charles Gleyre, they discovered that they shared an interest in painting landscape and contemporary life rather than historical or mythological scenes. Following a practice that had become popular by mid-century, they ventured into the countryside together to paint in the open air, but not for the purpose of making sketches to be developed into finished works in the studio, as was the usual custom. By painting in sunlight directly from nature, making bold use of the vivid synthetic pigments that had become available since the beginning of the century, they began to develop a lighter and brighter manner of painting that extended further the Realism of Gustave Courbet and the Barbizon school.
A favourite meeting place for the artists was the Café Guerbois on Avenue de Clichy in Paris, where the discussions were led by Édouard Manet, whom the younger artists admired. They were soon joined by Camille Pissarro, Paul Cézanne, Armand Guillaumin. During the 1860s, the Salon jury rejected about half of the works submitted by Monet and his friends in favour of works by artists faithful to the approved style. In 1863, the Salon jury rejected Manet's The Luncheon on the Grass because it depicted a nude woman with two clothed men at a picnic. While the Salon jury accepted nudes in historical and allegorical paintings, they condemned Manet for placing a realistic nude in a contemporary setting; the jury's worded rejection of Manet's painting appalled his admirers, the unusually large number of rejected works that year perturbed many French artists. After Emperor Napoleon III saw the rejected works of 1863, he decreed that the public be allowed to judge the work themselves, the Salon des Refusés was organized.
While many viewers came only to laugh, the Salon des Refusés drew attention to the existence of a new tendency in art and attracted more visi
Mexico the United Mexican States, is a country in the southern portion of North America. It is bordered to the north by the United States. Covering 2,000,000 square kilometres, the nation is the fifth largest country in the Americas by total area and the 13th largest independent state in the world. With an estimated population of over 120 million people, the country is the eleventh most populous state and the most populous Spanish-speaking state in the world, while being the second most populous nation in Latin America after Brazil. Mexico is a federation comprising 31 states and Mexico City, a special federal entity, the capital city and its most populous city. Other metropolises in the state include Guadalajara, Puebla, Tijuana and León. Pre-Columbian Mexico dates to about 8000 BC and is identified as one of five cradles of civilization and was home to many advanced Mesoamerican civilizations such as the Olmec, Teotihuacan, Zapotec and Aztec before first contact with Europeans. In 1521, the Spanish Empire conquered and colonized the territory from its politically powerful base in Mexico-Tenochtitlan, administered as the viceroyalty of New Spain.
Three centuries the territory became a nation state following its recognition in 1821 after the Mexican War of Independence. The post-independence period was tumultuous, characterized by economic inequality and many contrasting political changes; the Mexican–American War led to a territorial cession of the extant northern territories to the United States. The Pastry War, the Franco-Mexican War, a civil war, two empires, the Porfiriato occurred in the 19th century; the Porfiriato was ended by the start of the Mexican Revolution in 1910, which culminated with the promulgation of the 1917 Constitution and the emergence of the country's current political system as a federal, democratic republic. Mexico has the 11th largest by purchasing power parity; the Mexican economy is linked to those of its 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement partners the United States. In 1994, Mexico became the first Latin American member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, it is classified as an upper-middle income country by the World Bank and a newly industrialized country by several analysts.
The country is considered both a regional power and a middle power, is identified as an emerging global power. Due to its rich culture and history, Mexico ranks first in the Americas and seventh in the world for number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Mexico is an ecologically megadiverse country, ranking fourth in the world for its biodiversity. Mexico receives a huge number of tourists every year: in 2018, it was the sixth most-visited country in the world, with 39 million international arrivals. Mexico is a member of the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the G8+5, the G20, the Uniting for Consensus group of the UN, the Pacific Alliance trade bloc. Mēxihco is the Nahuatl term for the heartland of the Aztec Empire, namely the Valley of Mexico and surrounding territories, with its people being known as the Mexica, it is believed to be a toponym for the valley which became the primary ethnonym for the Aztec Triple Alliance as a result, although it could have been the other way around.
In the colonial era, back when Mexico was called New Spain this territory became the Intendency of Mexico and after New Spain achieved independence from the Spanish Empire it came to be known as the State of Mexico with the new country being named after its capital: the City of Mexico, which itself was founded in 1524 on top of the ancient Mexica capital of Mexico-Tenochtitlan. Traditionally, the name Tenochtitlan was thought to come from Nahuatl tetl and nōchtli and is thought to mean "Among the prickly pears rocks". However, one attestation in the late 16th-century manuscript known as "the Bancroft dialogues" suggests the second vowel was short, so that the true etymology remains uncertain; the suffix -co is the Nahuatl locative, making the word a place name. Beyond that, the etymology is uncertain, it has been suggested that it is derived from Mextli or Mēxihtli, a secret name for the god of war and patron of the Mexica, Huitzilopochtli, in which case Mēxihco means "place where Huitzilopochtli lives".
Another hypothesis suggests that Mēxihco derives from a portmanteau of the Nahuatl words for "moon" and navel. This meaning might refer to Tenochtitlan's position in the middle of Lake Texcoco; the system of interconnected lakes, of which Texcoco formed the center, had the form of a rabbit, which the Mesoamericans pareidolically associated with the moon rabbit. Still another hypothesis suggests that the word is derived from Mēctli, the name of the goddess of maguey; the name of the city-state was transliterated to Spanish as México with the phonetic value of the letter x in Medieval Spanish, which represented the voiceless postalveolar fricative. This sound, as well as the voiced postalveolar fricative, represented by a j, evolved into a voiceless velar fricative during the 16th century; this led to the use of the variant Méjico in many publications in Spanish, most notably in Spain, whereas in Mexico and most other Spanish–speaking countries, México was the preferred spelling. In recent years, the Real Academia Española, which regulates the Spanish l
Seville is the capital and largest city of the autonomous community of Andalusia and the province of Seville, Spain. It is situated on the plain of the river Guadalquivir; the inhabitants of the city are known as sevillanos or hispalenses, after the Roman name of the city, Hispalis. Seville has a municipal population of about 690,000 as of 2016, a metropolitan population of about 1.5 million, making it the fourth-largest city in Spain and the 30th most populous municipality in the European Union. Its Old Town, with an area of 4 square kilometres, contains three UNESCO World Heritage Sites: the Alcázar palace complex, the Cathedral and the General Archive of the Indies; the Seville harbour, located about 80 kilometres from the Atlantic Ocean, is the only river port in Spain. Seville is the hottest major metropolitan area in the geographical Southwestern Europe, with summer average high temperatures of above 35 °C. Seville was founded as the Roman city of Hispalis, it became known as Ishbiliyya after the Muslim conquest in 712.
During the Muslim rule in Spain, Seville came under the jurisdiction of the Caliphate of Córdoba before becoming the independent Taifa of Seville. After the discovery of the Americas, Seville became one of the economic centres of the Spanish Empire as its port monopolised the trans-oceanic trade and the Casa de Contratación wielded its power, opening a Golden Age of arts and literature. In 1519, Ferdinand Magellan departed from Seville for the first circumnavigation of the Earth. Coinciding with the Baroque period of European history, the 17th century in Seville represented the most brilliant flowering of the city's culture; the 20th century in Seville saw the tribulations of the Spanish Civil War, decisive cultural milestones such as the Ibero-American Exposition of 1929 and Expo'92, the city's election as the capital of the Autonomous Community of Andalusia. Hisbaal is the oldest name for Seville, it appears to have originated during the Phoenician colonisation of the Tartessian culture in south-western Iberia and it refers to the God Baal.
According to Manuel Pellicer Catalán, the ancient name was Spal, it meant "lowland" in the Phoenician language. During Roman rule, the name was Latinised as Hispal and as Hispalis. After the Umayyad invasion, this name was adapted into Arabic as Ishbiliyya: since p does not exist in Arabic, it was replaced by b. NO8DO is the official motto of Seville, popularly believed to be a rebus signifying the Spanish No me ha dejado, meaning "She has not abandoned me"; the phrase, pronounced with synalepha as, is spelled with an eight in the middle representing the word madeja "skein ". Legend states that the title was given by King Alfonso X, resident in the city's Alcázar and supported by the citizens when his son Sancho IV of Castile, tried to usurp the throne from him; the emblem is present on Seville's municipal flag, features on city property such as manhole covers, Christopher Columbus's tomb in the Cathedral. Seville is 2,200 years old; the passage of the various civilizations instrumental in its growth has left the city with a distinct personality, a large and well-preserved historical centre.
The mythological founder of the city is Hercules identified with the Phoenician god Melqart, who the myth says sailed through the Strait of Gibraltar to the Atlantic, founded trading posts at the current sites of Cádiz and of Seville. The original core of the city, in the neighbourhood of the present-day street, Cuesta del Rosario, dates to the 8th century BC, when Seville was on an island in the Guadalquivir. Archaeological excavations in 1999 found anthropic remains under the north wall of the Real Alcázar dating to the 8th–7th century BC; the town was called Hisbaal by the Phoenicians and by the Tartessians, the indigenous pre-Roman Iberian people of Tartessos, who controlled the Guadalquivir Valley at the time. The city was known from Roman times as Hispal and as Hispalis. Hispalis developed into one of the great market and industrial centres of Hispania, while the nearby Roman city of Italica remained a Roman residential city. Large-scale Roman archaeological remains can be seen there and at the nearby town of Carmona as well.
Existing Roman features in Seville itself include the remains exposed in situ in the underground Antiquarium of the Metropol Parasol building, the remnants of an aqueduct, three pillars of a temple in Mármoles Street, the columns of La Alameda de Hércules and the remains in the Patio de Banderas square near the Seville Cathedral. The walls surrounding the city were built during the rule of Julius Caesar, but their current course and design were the result of Moorish reconstructions. Following Roman rule, there were successive conquests of the Roman province of Hispania Baetica by the Vandals, the Suebi and the Visigoths during the 5th and 6th centuries. Seville was taken by the Moors, during the conquest of Hispalis in 712, it was the capital for the kings of the Umayyad Caliphate, the Almoravid dynasty first and
Social realism is the term used for work produced by painters, photographers and filmmakers that aims to draw attention to the real socio-political conditions of the working class as a means to critique of the power structures behind these conditions. While the movement's characteristics vary from nation to nation, it always utilizes a form of descriptive or critical realism. Taking its roots from European Realism, Social Realism aims to reveal tensions between an oppressive, hegemonic force, its victims; the term is sometimes more narrowly used for an art movement that flourished between the two World Wars as a reaction to the hardships and problems suffered by common people after the Great Crash. In order to make their art more accessible to a wider audience, artists turned to realist portrayals of anonymous workers as well as celebrities as heroic symbols of strength in the face of adversity; the goal of the artists in doing so was political as they wished to expose the deteriorating conditions of the poor and working classes and hold the existing governmental and social systems accountable.
Social realism should not be confused with socialist realism, the official Soviet art form, institutionalized by Joseph Stalin in 1934 and was adopted by allied Communist parties worldwide. It is different from realism as it not only presents conditions of the poor, but does so by conveying the tensions between two opposing forces, such as between farmers and their feudal lord. However, sometimes the terms social realism and socialist realism are used interchangeably. Social realism traces back to 19th-century European Realism, including the art of Honoré Daumier, Gustave Courbet and Jean-François Millet. Britain's Industrial Revolution aroused concern for the urban poor, in the 1870s the work of artists such as Luke Fildes, Hubert von Herkomer, Frank Holl, William Small were reproduced in The Graphic. In Russia, Peredvizhniki or "Social Realism" was critical of the social environment that caused the conditions pictured, denounced the "evil" Tsarist period. Ilya Repin said that his art work was aimed “To criticize all the monstrosities of our vile society” of the Tsarist period.
Similar concerns were addressed in 20th-century Britain by the Artists' International Association, Mass Observation and the Kitchen sink school. Social realist photography draws from the documentary traditions of the late 19th century, such as the work of Jacob A. Riis, Maksim Dmitriyev. In about 1900, a group of Realist artists led by Robert Henri challenged the American Impressionism and academics, in what would become known as the Ashcan school; the term was suggested by a drawing by George Bellows, captioned Disappointments of the Ash Can, which appeared in the Philadelphia Record in April 1915. In paintings, illustrations and lithographs, Ashcan artists concentrated on portraying New York's vitality, with a keen eye on current events and the era's social and political rhetoric. H. Barbara Weinberg of The Metropolitan Museum of Art has described the artists as documenting "an unsettling, transitional time, marked by confidence and doubt and trepidation. Ignoring or registering only harsh new realities such as the problems of immigration and urban poverty, they shone a positive light on their era."Notable Ashcan works include George Luks’ Breaker Boy and John Sloan’s Sixth Avenue Elevated at Third Street.
The Ashcan school influenced the art of the Depression era, including Thomas Hart Benton’s mural City Activity with Subway. The term dates on a broader scale to the Realist movement in French art during the mid-19th century. Social realism in the 20th century refers to the works of the French artist Gustave Courbet and in particular to the implications of his 19th-century paintings A Burial at Ornans and The Stone Breakers, which scandalized French Salon–goers of 1850, is seen as an international phenomenon traced back to European realism and the works of Honoré Daumier and Jean-François Millet; the social realist style fell out of fashion in the 1960s but is still influential in thinking and the art of today. In the more limited meaning of the term, Social Realism with roots in European Realism became an important art movement during the Great Depression in the United States in the 1930s; as an American artistic movement it is related to American scene painting and to Regionalism. American Social Realism includes the works of such artists as those from the Ashcan School including Edward Hopper, Thomas Hart Benton, Will Barnet, Ben Shahn, Jacob Lawrence, Paul Meltsner, Romare Bearden, Rafael Soyer, Isaac Soyer, Moses Soyer, Reginald Marsh, John Steuart Curry, Arnold Blanch, Aaron Douglas, Grant Wood, Horace Pippin, Walt Kuhn, Isabel Bishop, Paul Cadmus, Doris Lee, Philip Evergood, Mitchell Siporin, Robert Gwathmey, Adolf Dehn, Harry Sternberg, Gregorio Prestopino, Louis Lozowick, William Gropper, Philip Guston, Jack Levine, Ralph Ward Stackpole, John Augustus Walker and others.
It extends to the art of photography as exemplified by the works of Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, Margaret Bourke-White, Lewis Hine, Edward Steichen, Gordon Parks, Arthur Rothstein, Marion Post Wolcott, Doris Ulmann, Berenice Abbott, Aaron Siskind, Russell Lee among several others. In Mexico the painter Frida Kahlo is associated with the social realism movement. In Mexico was the Mexican muralist movement that took place in the 1920s and 1930s; the Mexican muralist movement is characterized by its political undertones, the majority of which are of a Marxist nature, the social and political situation of post-revolutionary Mexico. Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, José
Louis Aragon was a French poet, one of the leading voices of the surrealist movement in France, who co-founded with André Breton and Philippe Soupault the surrealist review Littérature. He was a novelist and editor, a long-time member of the Communist Party and a member of the Académie Goncourt. Louis Aragon was born in Paris, he was raised by his mother and maternal grandmother, believing them to be his sister and foster mother, respectively. His biological father, Louis Andrieux, a former senator for Forcalquier, was married and thirty years older than Aragon's mother, whom he seduced when she was seventeen. Aragon's mother passed Andrieux off to her son as his godfather. Aragon was only told the truth at the age of 19, as he was leaving to serve in the First World War, from which neither he nor his parents believed he would return. Andrieux's refusal or inability to recognize his son would influence Aragon's poetry on. Having been involved in Dadaism from 1919 to 1924, he became a founding member of Surrealism in 1924, with André Breton and Philippe Soupault under the pen-name "Aragon".
In the 1920s, Aragon became a fellow traveller of the French Communist Party along with several other surrealists, joined the Party in January 1927. In 1933 he began to write for the party's newspaper, L'Humanité, in the "news in brief" section, he would remain a member for the rest of his life, writing several political poems including one to Maurice Thorez, the general secretary of the PCF. During the World Congress of Writers for the Defence of Culture, Aragon opposed his former friend André Breton, who wanted to use the opportunity as a tribune to defend the writer Victor Serge, associated with Leon Trotsky's Left Opposition. Aragon was critical of the USSR after the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union during which Joseph Stalin's personality cult was denounced by Nikita Khrushchev; the French surrealists had long claimed Lewis Carroll as one of their own, Aragon published his translation of The Hunting of the Snark in 1929, "shortly before he completed his transition from Snarxism to Marxism", as Martin Gardner puts it.
Witness the key stanza of the poem in Aragon's translation: Gardner, who calls the translation "pedestrian" and deems the rest of Aragon's writings on Carroll's nonsense poetry full of factual errors, says that there is no evidence that Aragon intended any of it as a joke. Apart from working as a journalist for L'Humanité, Louis Aragon became, along with Paul Nizan, editor secretary of the journal Commune, published by the Association des Écrivains et Artistes Révolutionnaires, which aimed at gathering intellectuals and artists in a common front against fascism. Aragon became a member of the directing committee of the Commune journal in January 1937, along with André Gide, Romain Rolland and Paul Vaillant-Couturier; the journal took the name of "French literary review for the defence of culture". With Gide's withdrawal in August 1937, Vaillant-Couturier's death in autumn 1937 and Romain Rolland's old age, Aragon became its effective director. In December 1938, he called as chief editor the young writer Jacques Decour.
The Commune journal was involved in the mobilization of French intellectuals in favor of the Spanish Republic. In March 1937, Aragon was called on by the PCF to head the new evening daily, Ce soir, which he was charged with launching, along with the writer Jean-Richard Bloch. Ce soir attempted to compete with Paris-Soir. Outlawed in August 1939, Ce soir was re-opened after the Liberation, Aragon again became its lead, first with Bloch alone after Bloch's death in 1947; the newspaper, which counted Emile Danoën among its collaborators, closed in March 1953. In 1939 he married Russian-born author Elsa Triolet, the sister of Lilya Brik, a mistress and partner of Russian poet Vladimir Mayakovsky, he had met her in 1928, she became his muse starting in the 1940s. Aragon and Triolet collaborated in the left-wing French media before and during World War II, going underground for most of the German occupation. Aragon was mobilized in 1939, awarded the Croix de guerre and the military medal for acts of bravery.
After the May 1940 defeat, he took refuge in the Southern Zone. He was one of several poets, along with René Char, Francis Ponge, Robert Desnos, Paul Éluard, Jean Prévost, Jean-Pierre Rosnay, etc. to join the Resistance, both through literary activities and as an actual organiser of Resistance acts. Otto Abetz was the German governor, produced a series of "black lists" of authors forbidden to be read, circulated or sold in Nazi Occupied France; these included anything written by a Jew, a communist, an Anglo-Saxon or anyone else, anti-Germanic or anti-fascist. Aragon and André Malraux were both on these "Otto Lists" of forbidden authors. During the war, Aragon wrote for the underground press Les Éditions de Minuit and was a member of the National Front Resistance movement, his poetry was published along texts by Vercors, Pierre Seghers or Paul Eluard in Switzerland in 1943 after being smuggled out of occupied France by his friend and publisher François Lachenal. He participated with his wife in the setting-up of the National Front of Writers in the Southern Zone.
This activism led him to break his friendly relationship with Pierre Drieu La Rochelle, who had chosen Collaborationism. Along with Paul Éluard, Pierre Seghers and René Char, Aragon would maintain the memory of the Resistance in his post-war poems, he thus wrote, in 1954, Strophes pour se souvenir in commemoration of the role of foreigners in the Resistance, which cel
Catalonia is an autonomous community in Spain on the northeastern corner of the Iberian Peninsula, designated as a nationality by its Statute of Autonomy. Catalonia consists of four provinces: Barcelona, Girona and Tarragona; the capital and largest city is Barcelona, the second-most populated municipality in Spain and the core of the sixth most populous urban area in the European Union. It comprises most of the territory of the former Principality of Catalonia, it is bordered by France and Andorra to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the east, the Spanish autonomous communities of Aragon to the west and Valencia to the south. The official languages are Catalan and the Aranese dialect of Occitan. In the late 8th century, the counties of the March of Gothia and the Hispanic March were established by the Frankish kingdom as feudal vassals across and near the eastern Pyrenees as a defensive barrier against Muslim invasions; the eastern counties of these marches were united under the rule of the Frankish vassal, the count of Barcelona, were called Catalonia.
In the 10th century the County of Barcelona became independent de facto. In 1137, Barcelona and the Kingdom of Aragon were united by marriage under the Crown of Aragon; the de jure end of Frankish rule was ratified by French and Aragonese monarchs in the Treaty of Corbeil in 1258. The Principality of Catalonia developed its own institutional system, such as courts, constitutions, becoming the base for the Crown of Aragon's naval power and expansionism in the Mediterranean. In the Middle Ages, Catalan literature flourished. During the last Medieval centuries natural disasters, social turmoils and military conflicts affected the Principality. Between 1469 and 1516, the king of Aragon and the queen of Castile married and ruled their realms together, retaining all of their distinct institutions and legislation. During the Franco-Spanish War, Catalonia revolted against a large and burdensome presence of the royal army in its territory, being proclaimed a republic under French protection. Within a brief period France took full control of Catalonia, until it was reconquered by the Spanish army.
Under the terms of the Treaty of the Pyrenees in 1659, the Spanish Crown ceded the northern parts of Catalonia the County of Roussillon, to France. During the War of the Spanish Succession, the Crown of Aragon sided against the Bourbon Philip V of Spain; this led to the eclipse of Catalan as a language of literature, replaced by Spanish. Along the 18th century, Catalonia experienced economic growth, reinforced in the late quarter of the century when the Castile's trade monopoly with American colonies ended. In the 19th century, Catalonia was affected by the Napoleonic and Carlist Wars. In the second third of the century, Catalonia experienced significant industrialisation; as wealth from the industrial expansion grew, Catalonia saw a cultural renaissance coupled with incipient nationalism while several workers movements appeared. In 1914, the four Catalan provinces formed a commonwealth, with the return of democracy during the Second Spanish Republic, the Generalitat of Catalonia was restored as an autonomous government.
After the Spanish Civil War, the Francoist dictatorship enacted repressive measures, abolishing Catalan self-government and banning the official use of the Catalan language again. After a first period of autarky, from the late 1950s through to the 1970s Catalonia saw rapid economic growth, drawing many workers from across Spain, making Barcelona one of Europe's largest industrial metropolitan areas and turning Catalonia into a major tourist destination. Since the Spanish transition to democracy, Catalonia has regained considerable autonomy in political, educational and cultural affairs and is now one of the most economically dynamic communities of Spain. In the 2010s there has been growing support for Catalan independence. On 27 October 2017, the Catalan Parliament declared independence from Spain following a disputed referendum; the Spanish Senate voted in favour of enforcing direct rule by removing the entire Catalan government and calling a snap regional election for 21 December. On 2 November of the same year, the Spanish Supreme Court imprisoned 7 former ministers of the Catalan government on charges of rebellion and misuse of public funds, while several others—including then-President of Catalonia, Carles Puigdemont—fled to other European countries.
The name Catalonia—Catalunya in Catalan, spelled Cathalonia, or Cathalaunia in Medieval Latin—began to be used for the homeland of the Catalans in the late 11th century and was used before as a territorial reference to the group of counties that comprised part of the March of Gothia and March of Hispania under the control of the Count of Barcelona and his relatives. The origin of the name Catalunya is subject to diverse interpretations because of a lack of evidence. One theory suggests that Catalunya derives from the name Gothia Launia, since the origins of the Catalan counts and people were found in the March of Gothia, known as Gothia, whence Gothlan
Italy the Italian Republic, is a country in Southern Europe. Located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, Italy shares open land borders with France, Austria and the enclaved microstates San Marino and Vatican City. Italy covers an area of 301,340 km2 and has a temperate seasonal and Mediterranean climate. With around 61 million inhabitants, it is the fourth-most populous EU member state and the most populous country in Southern Europe. Due to its central geographic location in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, Italy has been home to a myriad of peoples and cultures. In addition to the various ancient peoples dispersed throughout modern-day Italy, the most famous of which being the Indo-European Italics who gave the peninsula its name, beginning from the classical era and Carthaginians founded colonies in insular Italy and Genoa, Greeks established settlements in the so-called Magna Graecia, while Etruscans and Celts inhabited central and northern Italy respectively; the Italic tribe known as the Latins formed the Roman Kingdom in the 8th century BC, which became a republic with a government of the Senate and the People.
The Roman Republic conquered and assimilated its neighbours on the peninsula, in some cases through the establishment of federations, the Republic expanded and conquered parts of Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. By the first century BC, the Roman Empire emerged as the dominant power in the Mediterranean Basin and became the leading cultural and religious centre of Western civilisation, inaugurating the Pax Romana, a period of more than 200 years during which Italy's technology, economy and literature flourished. Italy remained the metropole of the Roman Empire; the legacy of the Roman Empire endured its fall and can be observed in the global distribution of culture, governments and the Latin script. During the Early Middle Ages, Italy endured sociopolitical collapse and barbarian invasions, but by the 11th century, numerous rival city-states and maritime republics in the northern and central regions of Italy, rose to great prosperity through shipping and banking, laying the groundwork for modern capitalism.
These independent statelets served as Europe's main trading hubs with Asia and the Near East enjoying a greater degree of democracy than the larger feudal monarchies that were consolidating throughout Europe. The Renaissance began in Italy and spread to the rest of Europe, bringing a renewed interest in humanism, science and art. Italian culture flourished, producing famous scholars and polymaths such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael and Machiavelli. During the Middle Ages, Italian explorers such as Marco Polo, Christopher Columbus, Amerigo Vespucci, John Cabot and Giovanni da Verrazzano discovered new routes to the Far East and the New World, helping to usher in the European Age of Discovery. Italy's commercial and political power waned with the opening of trade routes that bypassed the Mediterranean. Centuries of infighting between the Italian city-states, such as the Italian Wars of the 15th and 16th centuries, left the region fragmented, it was subsequently conquered and further divided by European powers such as France and Austria.
By the mid-19th century, rising Italian nationalism and calls for independence from foreign control led to a period of revolutionary political upheaval. After centuries of foreign domination and political division, Italy was entirely unified in 1871, establishing the Kingdom of Italy as a great power. From the late 19th century to the early 20th century, Italy industrialised, namely in the north, acquired a colonial empire, while the south remained impoverished and excluded from industrialisation, fuelling a large and influential diaspora. Despite being one of the main victors in World War I, Italy entered a period of economic crisis and social turmoil, leading to the rise of a fascist dictatorship in 1922. Participation in World War II on the Axis side ended in military defeat, economic destruction and the Italian Civil War. Following the liberation of Italy and the rise of the resistance, the country abolished the monarchy, reinstated democracy, enjoyed a prolonged economic boom and, despite periods of sociopolitical turmoil became a developed country.
Today, Italy is considered to be one of the world's most culturally and economically advanced countries, with the sixth-largest worldwide national wealth. Its advanced economy ranks eighth-largest in the world and third in the Eurozone by nominal GDP. Italy owns the third-largest central bank gold reserve, it has a high level of human development, it stands among the top countries for life expectancy. The country plays a prominent role in regional and global economic, military and diplomatic affairs. Italy is a founding and leading member of the European Union and a member of numerous international institutions, including the UN, NATO, the OECD, the OSCE, the WTO, the G7, the G20, the Union for the Mediterranean, the Council of Europe, Uniting for Consensus, the Schengen Area and many more; as a reflection