The social and political process that a significant part of Catalan society is engaged in needs to be explained analyzing its origins some ten years ago and its current state of development. At present no one can reasonably predict the future evolution and eventual outcome of this impressive democratic challenge to twenty-first century Europe.
Salvador Cardús is a professor of sociology at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona and the current Ginebre Serra Visiting Professor in Catalan Studies at Stanford's Division of Literatures, Languages, and Cultures. His research interests include identity and immigration, sociology of religion, mass media and culture, nationalistic phenomena and the epistemology of the social sciences. Cardús' recent work is on the shaping of a new paradigm to study contemporary identity processes and the challenges of fragmented societies in the global order as a means to negotiate recognition while avoiding difficulties of self-definition.