Mythology and Ideology of the Basque Language
This small book on ideas about the nature and origin of the Basque language up to the early twentieth century is a highly erudite essay, even if the motivation for its composition was ultimately political. Its erudition is guaranteed by the professional credentials of its author, Antonio Tovar, one of twentieth-century Spain’s most polymathic intellectuals and men of letters, at the same time that its reason for being was the fruit of his passionate political commitment, which originated in his early years and, modulated over the course of his life by criticism and experience, led him to take an interest in all aspects of public life, especially those related to culture. At the crucial moment of the book’s composition, near the death of the dictator Francisco Franco in 1975, there was a need for actors with a sincere desire to understand the ideas and aspirations of the opposing sides, broad-minded and generous openness when it came to revising their own decades-old views, and perceptive intelligence for building connections with the proponents of other ideologies on the basis of shared humanist values. Tovar was one of these men.