We would like to thank students and staff for celebrating Christmas with us. We got some presents from the Tió, we sang, we got prizes and some us even danced!

We hope you enjoyed it!


Ja arriba Nadal! Recordeu que dimarts dia 4 ho celebrarem a la classe de català! Farem cagar el tió, rebrem regals i cantarem! Hi esteu tots convidats!


The Centre for Galician Studies is organizing a new activity for its students in collaboration with the Centre for Portuguese Studies and the Portuguese Society of the University the Birmingham.


The Centre for Galician Studies is organizing in collaboration with the Centre for Portuguese Studies a special activity for its students. We are going to celebrate one of the most popular traditions in Galicia and Portugal: o Magosto.


The Centre for Galician Studies is pleased to invite you to a very special event. The Galician poet María Rosendo Priego and the Galician musician Mano Panforreteiro will treat us to a unique experience of poetry, music and unspeakable images.

NÓMADE is a poetry recital in which Feminism and Theatre walk hand in hand.

Please come and join us next Monday 19th November at 2.15 pm at the Barber Concert Hall (The Barber Institute of Fine Arts, University of Birmingham).

Everybody is welcome!


Let's practice the physical description vocabulary! Could you guess who is who?
Here you will find baby pictures of Catalan Year 1 students. Will you be able to identify them? Why don't you have a try? Be aware that there is an intruder!

If you are not in Catalan Year 1 but still like to participate, you can send your answers to

Good luck to everyone!!


Welcome to the new academic year 2012-2013

Galician, Basque and Catalan studies extend a warm welcome to all our students! We wish you an enjoyable and successful time with us. We hope that you will find this blog a good way of keeping up with all the latest news from our languages. Remember that you can like us on Facebook.
Throughout the year we will be organising parties, seminars, special lectures and many other surprises. Check our blog regularly!

Arriya (The Stone)

A place in the frontier;

Three lovers,

two families;

and a bet:

The stone.”

In a town in the Basque country border, two families are involved in a bet, and, dragged by it, three young lovers, unable to pull themselves out of the inertia of the society they live in, cross their own fates and see time pass them by. It is an endless duel they can not scape from.

Awarded Basque film Arriya (The Stone) directed by ALBERTO J. GORRITIBEREA will be screened on Wednesday, 2nd of May, 14.30h at the Midlands Arts Centre (MAC). Come un join us! The film director will be there for a question and answer session after the film.


We are pleased to invite you to the II Catalan, Basque and Galician Cinema Season organised by the University of Birmingham at the Midlands Arts Centre in Birmingham on the 2nd , 9th and 16th May.

The season will start with the projection of the awarded Basque film Arriya (The Stone) directed by ALBERTO J. GORRITIBEREA. The film director will be there for a question and answer session after the film.
This event will take place on Wednesday, 2nd of May, 14.30h at the Midlands Arts Centre (MAC).

Wednesday, 9th May at the same time and place the well known Catalan film, Pa Negre (Black Bread) will be screened, and the producer ISONA PASSOLA (recently awarded with La Creu de Sant Jordi) will take part in a discussion about the film after the projection.

Finally, the 16th May at the same time and place, the film Pedro e o Capitan (Pedro and the Captain) will be screened, and the director PABLO IGLESIAS will take part in a discussion about the film after the projection.

The three films will be projected in original version with English subtitles. All screenings will be free of charge thanks to the generous support of the Etxepare Basque Institute, Institut Ramon Llull, Xunta de Galicia and the University of Birmingham.

Please, note that as there is limited seating an early arrival will help to avoid disappointment.

You can find more information about the films at: 

ARRIYA (The Stone):
PA NEGRE (Black Bread):
PEDRO E O CAPITAN (Pedro and the Captain):

The address of the Midlands Arts Centre of Birmingham is Cannon Hill Park, 2 Russell Road, Birmingham B12 9QH.

Join us and celebrate Sant Jordi online

Ja podem celebrar el Sant Jordi gràcies a la nova iniciativa de LletrA:  Un Sant Jordi ple de veus. Fins al 29 d’abril podeu enregistrar breus fragments de les vostres lectures preferides. Les plataformes del web  permeten fer l’enregistrament en xarxa i compartir la lectura de manera ben senzilla.  
Es tracta d’un projecte obert a tothom que contribuirà en els inicis de la creació d’una Audioteca de literatura catalana.
Que tingueu un bon dia de Sant Jordi!


Please come and enjoy a Poetry reading in Basque, Catalan, Galician and Portuguese that will take place next Monday 19th March at 3pm.

The poems will be read in the original languages and in their translations into English. 
Students, staff & the Galician award-winning poet Isaac Xubín will be performing.

When: Monday 19th March 3pm
Where: Watson Building LT Room A G23

Everybody is welcome! 


Exact dates of the International Certificates of Catalan Language. All of them will take place at the University of Birmingham.

Nivell bàsic: 12.05.12

Nivell elemental: 12.05.12

Nivell intermedi: 19.05.12

Nivell superior: 02.06.12

Registration period: 13.03.12- 27.04.12

If you need more information, contact Raquel Navas


The Centre for Galician Studies has organized a research seminar on Translation and Gender for Wednesday 7th March 4pm (Strathcona LT3). Dr Olga Castro (Aston University) who is a specialist in Gender and Translation Studies will be giving a paper entitled "Translation and Minorities: Gender and National Identities at Stake".

Dr Castro will focus on the political role of translation in the construction of gender and cultural/national identities in the Galician context. This will lead her to critically intertwine the three fields of inquiry crucial to her study – namely, Translation Studies, Feminist Theory and Galician Studies.

Drawing  by courtesy of Séchu Sende 

Dr Olga Castro is Lecturer in Translation Studies and Spanish at Aston University. She joined Aston after a year working as Teaching Fellow in Translation at the University of Exeter. She holds a Ph.D. in Translation (with the European Doctorate Mention) from the University of Vigo, Spain (2010), for which she has been also awarded the PhD Extraordinary Prize.  She has published different articles and chapters in edited books and journals, and has co-authored with María Reimóndez the monograph Feminismos (Xerais, forthcoming 2012). She is secretary of the International Association for Galician Studies. 

Research Seminar on Basque Art

The Department of Modern Languages has organised a Hispanic Studies research seminar on Basque Art. Dr Juan Arana from the University of Liverpool will speak about two of the most significant Basque artists during the 20th century, Eduardo Chillida and Jorge Oteiza


“Eduardo Chillida and Jorge Oteiza: A Posthumous Confrontation

Wednesday 29th February, 3.00pm
Strathcona Lecture Theatre 6

Drinks reception
All welcome

Jorge Oteiza Enbil (October 21, 1908 – April 9, 2003), was a Basque Spanish sculptor, painter, designer and writer, renowned for being one of the main theorists on Spanish modern art. Oteiza was born in Orio (Gipuzkoa). He moved to South America in 1935, just before the Spanish Civil War, and stayed there for 14 years. In 1963 he published Quosque tandem!, an essay about the aesthetics inherent to Basque soul, based on Basque prehistoric art and Basque people's anthropological roots.

He died in San Sebastián, Gipuzkoa, in 2003.Following his will, a month after his death a museum dedicated to his career was opened in Alzuza, Navarre, in the place where he had lived since 1975. The Oteiza Museum is a monographic exhibition space housing the personal collection of Jorge Oteiza, which includes 1,690 sculptures, 2,000 experimental pieces from the artist’s Chalk Laboratory, and an extensive collection of drawings and collages.

Eduardo Chillida Juantegui, or Eduardo Txillida Juantegi in Basque, (10 January 1924 – 19 August 2002) was a Spanish Basque sculptor notable for his monumental abstract works.

Chillida's earliest sculptures concentrated on the human form (mostly torsos and busts); his later works tended to be more massive and more abstract, and included many monumental public works.[4] Chillida himself tended to reject the label of "abstract", preferring instead to call himself a "realist sculptor".

From quite early on, Chillida's sculpture found public recognition, and, in 1954, he produced the four doors for the basilica of Arantzazu, where works by other leading Basque sculptors – Jorge Oteiza, Agustin Ibarrola and Nestor Basterretxea – were also being installed. The following year, he carved a stone monument to the discoverer of penicillin, Sir Alexander Fleming, for a park in San Sebastián (it subsequently disappeared, but a new version has been installed on the promenade at San Sebastián bay).

At their best his works, although massive and monumental, suggest movement and tension. For example, the largest of his works in the United States, De Musica is an 81-ton steel sculpture featuring two pillars with arms that reach out but do not touch. Much of Chillida's work is inspired by his Basque upbringing. 

(texts adapted from the Wikipedia)


All students who are interested in obtaining a further qualification in Catalan should note that the Institut Ramon Llull offers the possibility of taking Catalan language exams with international recognition. The exams will be taken in May and June 2012 at the University of Birmingham. There are five different language levels: nivell bàsic, nivell elemental, nivell intermedi, nivell de suficiencia and nivell superior.
Exact dates to be confirmed.

For more information:

Au-pairs needed in the Basque Country

Would you like to go to the Basque Country this summer and live a wonderful experience with a native family? Then, read carefully the following details, as you may find information about some families that are looking for English au-pairs!

The information has been taken from the blog "A Basque in Boise".

Unai Ugarte says: We are a Basque speaking family with two kids ages 3 and 6 months. We live in Biscay, in the town of Lemoiz, 2 miles from the town of Gorliz and 16 miles from Bilbao City.  We are currently looking for an American au pair girl but the ones offering are obviously looking to learn Spanish within their host families. We on the contrary are speaking Basque with our children.  There are several possibilities to be explored to complete the learning process on her stay, according to her interests and profile since the kids are staying at school from 9 am to 4 pm during the week.  We live in an old Basque Home, totally renewed twenty years ago. Last year we renewed the bottom floor and there we have a bathroom and a big bedroom with a studying table, an armchair a TV and internet connection.  Unai Ugarte at

Izaskun Arretxe says: We are a couple with 2 kids (8 months and 3 years old ) living in Aretxabaleta (Basque Country) and we are looking for an english speaker au pair for 3 to 6 months.  The idea is taking care and play with our kids a few hour per day (about 6pm to 8pm) so the rest of the day will be free.  We can offer accomodation and food, anyway, for more details send us an email:

Miren Tere says: Babysitter needed from the beginning of June to the end of August, 2012 (flexible). June will be in Gasteiz, July and August in Lekeitio. The children are 4 and 6 years old, a girl and a boy. The working hours will be 5 1/2 h from Monday to Friday, with a salary or 80 Euros per week. The babysitter will live with the family and will have a private room. All meals are included.
-       Be 18 or older and have some experience taking care of children
-       Speak English and some Basque
For more information write to Miren Tere in Basque at

This is a unique occasion to improve your Basque and visit the Basque Country!