Spain: A Unique History
Stanley G. Payne
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From bloodthirsty conquest to exotic romance, stereotypes of Spain abound. This new volume by distinguished historian Stanley G. Payne draws on his half-century of experience to offer a balanced, broadly chronological survey of Spanish history from the Visigoths to the present. Who were the first “Spaniards”? Is Spain a fully Western country? Was Spanish liberalism a failure? Examining Spain’s unique role in the larger history of Western Europe, Payne reinterprets key aspects of the country’s history.
Topics include Muslim culture in the peninsula, the Spanish monarchy, the empire, and the relationship between Spain and Portugal. Turning to the twentieth century, Payne discusses the Second Republic and the Spanish Civil War. The book’s final chapters focus on the Franco regime, the nature of Spanish fascism, and the special role of the military. Analyzing the figure of Franco himself, Payne seeks to explain why some Spaniards still regard him with respect, while many others view the late dictator with profound loathing.
Framed by reflections on the author’s own formation as a Hispanist and his evaluation of the controversy about “historical memory” in contemporary Spain, this volume offers deeply informed insights into both the history and the historiography of a unique country.
A Choice Outstanding Academic Book
(ETA—Basque Homeland and Freedom) only a few years later. From Paris I traveled by rail to Spain by way of Toulouse. I wanted to make contact with the Spanish Socialist leadership there, which had possession of the mediation proposal of José Antonio Primo de Rivera of August 1936, conﬁscated by Indalecio Prieto and eventually deposited with the party leadership. Rodolfo Llopis, the party secretary, received me promptly and brusquely, and within twenty-four hours provided me with a photocopy of
this is doubtless correct, but they did create the ﬁrst political Spain, and at least began the process of forming a speciﬁc Spanish society, even though that process was far from complete by 700. They presided over a religious culture that was highly developed for that era, and also had begun to form a special kind of ideology and royal identity, so that at one point in the seventh century the Visigothic monarchy represented as fully developed a political and religious model as could be found in
Andalucía during the 1770s and quickly moving northward. Interestingly, they can be considered the ﬁrst modern mass public sports facilities in any country, inaugurating for an archaic spectacle a trend that would slowly but inexorably accelerate around the world for more modern sports during the next two centuries. Other aspects of “popular style” also crystallized, the various regional traditional costumes and popular dances assuming their full form during the second half of the eighteenth
Zamora in theory supported the Republic as a liberal democratic system. He opposed both radical anti-Catholic reformism and any form of rightist authoritarianism, believing that he had a special responsibility to “center the Republic,” as he put it. To that end he constantly interfered in parliamentary affairs, making and unmaking governments according to his own will, to the extent that he himself became one of the Republic’s chief political problems. As Alcalá Zamora saw it, the main problem
government and also try to conciliate the military, even at the cost of certain concessions to them. This was the best available solution, but was tried several days too late. The rebel leaders had pledged not to retreat once the revolt began, and rejected the compromise. They believed that Azaña and his colleagues could not be trusted and that the Martínez Barrio government would be too weak to cope with the revolutionaries. Indeed, by the early morning of July 19 there was a vehement