“Catalans pel món” by Pere Calders and the Catalan diaspora: an insight into Irony and magic realism in the context of Catalan identity. Alicia Moreno
Pere Calders was a 20th century Catalan writer renowned for his ironic short stories that are often endowed with irony, fantasy and humour. Irony is a covert form of communication that has a social intent, and given its complexity, it can sometimes lead to misunderstanding. It is triggered by certain cues, at linguistic or pragmatic level, which act as hints of the ironist’s intended meaning. This paper will undertake the analysis of Calders´ story “Catalans pel món”[Catalans about the word], which constitutes an example of literary ironic discourse characteristic of the author´s exile narrative. I will argue that, this story represents, through irony, both the Catalan diaspora following the Spanish civil war and an ideology regarding Catalan identity. An insight into the story will demonstrate the important role that the author´s strong sense of Catalan identity has in discerning the traumatic experience of exile. The analysis of this story will also consider whether its translation into English may pose some challenges for it to be interpreted as an ironic discourse by an English readership.