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7 - The codification of Catalan civil law

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  30 July 2009

Núria de Gispert i Catalá
Affiliation:
Consellera (Minister) of Justice Government of Catalonia
Hector L. MacQueen
Affiliation:
University of Edinburgh
Antoni Vaquer
Affiliation:
Universitat de Lleida
Santiago Espiau Espiau
Affiliation:
Universitat de Lleida
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Summary

Introduction

To examine the present position of civil law in Catalonia, and to compare it with the position of civil law in nations that show similarities with Catalonia, is a task that we consider to be of importance, in so far as an idea that must inspire – effectively inspire – the action of the government of Catalonia is understanding the civil law of Catalonia both as a feature that shapes the Catalan national identity, and also as a tool of social progress.

With respect to civil law as a feature that shapes our national identity, it should be remembered that, as stated by the Commission concerned with the review of the Compilation, at the beginning of the 1980s, ‘Civil Law represented, together with the language, one of the most important cultural products of the Catalan people, one of the principal exponents of their identity as a people, and therefore one of the essential reference points in identifying Catalonia as a product of a specific historical process’. We cannot – nor do we – view the cultivation and promotion of Catalonia's own legal system and language as an element of confrontation, but as a factor conducive to personal and collective coexistence and enrichment.

As for civil law considered as a tool of social progress, it should be borne in mind that the legal system, which shapes and indeed consolidates social relations, seeks to put forward peaceful and appropriate solutions to the conflicts that arise in every type of community.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2003

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