The Legacy Events Index

Spanish Civil War

In Spain, on July 18, 1936, a military revolt against the Republican government began, but it was soon defeated in Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, and several other eastern and northern cities. Thus, the country was divided between a rebel-held or Nationalist zone, generally in the agricultural areas, and a Republican or Loyalist zone, encompassing most industrial and other urban areas. The long Spanish Civil War ensued. The infamous German bombing of Guernica occurred during a Nationalist campaign to conquer the Basque region, Asturias, and other industrial regions of northern Spain. The Loyalists began a counteroffensive in December at Teruel. Initially successful, it was beaten back by February 1938. Madrid fell on March 28, 1939 and the civil war ended on April 1 of that same year.

The savage war was followed by an unusually vindictive peace. Franco made no attempt at national reconciliation; Loyalists were seen as "reds" who had been "anti-Spain." Hundreds of thousands were imprisoned, and perhaps 37,000 were executed during the first four years after the war. The Spanish people suffered greatly because of wartime damage and economic dislocation. Most of the Republican legislation favoring workers and peasants was immediately revoked. The main political forces of this period were the army, the church (which had developed close ties with Franco during the war), and the Falange, the small Spanish Fascist Party that Franco had converted into an official state party in 1937.

As the Allies began winning the war, Franco shifted policy, dropping fascist symbolism, giving more freedom to political expression, and instituting economic programs. Despite these moves towards liberalization and economic reform, the dictatorship continued to be oppressive. Revolts, terrorist attacks, and demonstrations were met with increasing violence and repression as the Franco regime brutally cracked down on any perceived resistance. This continued through Franco's death on November 20, 1975. Click here for more information from Microsoft Encarta Online Encyclopedia 2001.

Related Visual Art

Sama de Langreo (Asturias) septiembre 1963. La femme du mineur Preez Martinez, Constantina, dite Tina, est resee par la police, Eduardo Arroyo, Spain
Dangerous Games, Equipo Crónica, Spain
The Intruder, Equipo Crónica, Spain
No(W)here, Rogelio López Cuenca, Spain
Fireside Angel, Max Ernst, Germany / France
Cuatro fases en torno a una prohibicion, Juan Genoves, Spain
Mascara del Montserrat gritando, Julio Gonzalez, Spain
Visage criant a la grande main, Julio Gonzalez, Spain
El Crist del penjador, Josep Guinovart, Spain
War and Peace, Sean Landers, United States
Still Life with Old Shoe, Joan Miró, Spain / France
Catalonia, Robert Motherwell, United States
Iberia No. 2, Robert Motherwell, United States
Little Spanish Prison, Robert Motherwell, United States
Guernica, Pablo Picasso, Spain / France
Still Life with Bullhead, Pablo Picasso, Spain / France
Weeping Woman, Pablo Picasso, Spain / France
Crucifixion, Antonio Saura, Spain
Drap nuat (Knotted Sheet), Antoni Tàpies, Spain
Forma de crucificado (Form of Crucifixion), Antoni Tàpies, Spain
Gran pintura grisa, no. III, Antoni Tàpies, Spain
Pantalons y filferro (Pants and Wire), Antoni Tàpies, Spain
Pintura amb manilles (Pintura con esposas), Antoni Tàpies, Spain
Gernika, Jose Luis Zumeta, Spain

Related Films

Butterfly's Tongue

Related Literature

Decision, Kay Boyle