Spain in Our Hearts

Spain in Our Hearts

Americans in the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939

eBook - 2016
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From the acclaimed, best-selling author Adam Hochschild, a sweeping history of the Spanish Civil War, told through a dozen characters, including Ernest Hemingway and George Orwell: a tale of idealism, heartbreaking suffering, and a noble cause that failed

For three crucial years in the 1930s, the Spanish Civil War dominated headlines in America and around the world, as volunteers flooded to Spain to help its democratic government fight off a fascist uprising led by Francisco Franco and aided by Hitler and Mussolini. Today we're accustomed to remembering the war through Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls and Robert Capa's photographs. But Adam Hochschild has discovered some less familiar yet far more compelling characters who reveal the full tragedy and importance of the war: a fiery nineteen-year-old Kentucky woman who went to wartime Spain on her honeymoon, a Swarthmore College senior who was the first American casualty in the battle for Madrid, a pair of fiercely partisan, rivalrous New York Times reporters who covered the war from opposites sides, and a swashbuckling Texas oilman with Nazi sympathies who sold Franco almost all his oil -- at reduced prices, and on credit.

It was in many ways the opening battle of World War II, and we still have much to learn from it. Spain in Our Hearts is Adam Hochschild at his very best.
Publisher: Boston, Mass : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016
ISBN: 9780547974538
0547974531
Characteristics: 1 online resource

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eLode
Aug 04, 2017

The question no journalists asked in 1936, when they looked up and saw Nazi bombers in Spain, was where did they get gas ? Little is known outside Spain about this prelude to WW2. European nations and US had signed the non intervention treaty for the Spanish Civil War. One American, Torkild Rieber, fawned over fascists and offered unlimited credit from Texaco. He did it past the US entry into WW2 until the FBI noticed. Another shock was the fascist carnage after they captured territory : 200,000 killed off battlefields in 3 years is the low estimate, over 1000 people a week. Estimated battle casualties start at that number. The fascists tested more than air and tank power. After Germany and Italy won it for Franco, 370,000 were put in concentration camps or jails. Survival rates were not recorded. How did these outrages not shock anyone in Britain, France, US or Canada ? Monumental short sightedness ? How many times can that excuse be trotted out ? One reporter for a US chain was fired after he sent his coverage of Guernica, at the start of insurrection, the first city to be destroyed by aerial bombardment. Hitler’s pope Pius XII blessed the fascists. The elected Spanish government reformed education into a public service separate from church monopoly. Land reform allowed peasants to farm unused arable tracts. Although Ernest Hemingway, Eric Blair and well known personalities are included, the author follows a few of the brave who volunteered to fight for democracy in Spain (3000 in the Lincoln Brigade from US, 1500 in the Mackenzie Papineau Brigade from Canada and others ejected from Germany, Italy and Hungary). Hochschild knows how to tell their stories and keep the large narrative moving. Lois Orr was 19 years old when she arrived and managed to find work for 10 pesetas a day as a clerk in Barcelona. Bob and Marion Merriman were graduate students in their 20s. His story provides an arc for the conflict. He disappeared during the retreat from Teruel. “… this was all Marion was able to discover --- until she unexpectedly received a letter half a century later.”

SFPL_RicardoA Jun 22, 2017

A vivid account of the experiences lived by Americans who left everything behind to fight for the Republican forces in the Spanish Civil War. Plenty to discover here, including the political events that led to the war, the audacious journalism of Ernest Hemingway during the conflict, and the unspeakable cruelty that all of Spain endured. A great history that reads like a great novel.

PimaLib_MaryG Jun 22, 2016

Fascinating. Heartbreaking. Informative.

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