Programs : Brochure
- Locations: Barcelona, Spain
- Program Terms: Summer
- Restrictions: CU applicants only
Course: Memories of the Spanish Civil War: Consensus and Divergence
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Credit: 4 U.S. semester hours/credits (60 contact hours)
Pre-requisite: No pre-requisites (taught in English)
Approximate Dates: June 10 - July 8, 2017
Application Deadline: March 15, 2017
Long considered Spain’s most progressive city, Barcelona is proud of its well-established reputation as a center of political, social and cultural activism. This activism is not only apparent in its approach to intellectual life, but also in the visual arts and architecture. Gaudí, Miró and Tàpies are among the many internationally renowned figures who have called this city home. As a crossroads of Roman, Visigoth and Islamic civilizations, Barcelona is justifiably proud of its past. At the same time, its progressive spirit has made it one of the most modern and cosmopolitan cities in the world.
Memories of the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) have trapped the nation’s politics and society in a complex labyrinth. Segments of Spanish society are still struggling today to gain the right to a dignified remembrance and burial for those family members who were victims of the war and Franco’s subsequent dictatorship (1939-1975). This four week course, which is taught in English, aims to address the enduring debate in Spanish society about the Civil War by analyzing the conflict, its consequences, and its narrative from a holistic point of view.
In the aftermath of the dictatorship, which followed the defeat of the Republican government in 1939, a heavy “Curtain of Silence” shrouded the memory of the civil conflict. Consequently, the trauma of the war appeared to be overcome. However, at the beginning of the 21st Century the shadow of the war reappeared, and this time society not only petitioned to know what happened during the war and dictatorship, but also demanded the recovery of the memory of its victims, and justice for them. As a result, in 2007 the government passed the Law of Historical Memory that aimed to address these political and social issues.
The course starts with an introduction to the historical context of 1930’s Europe, and then examines Spain and the events of the conflict itself. Particular attention will be paid to the “construction of memory” throughout the periods of the dictatorship, and Spain’s transition to democracy through the analysis of the political discourse, literature, arts and audiovisual productions of the time. Finally, the issue of Transitional Justice from a comparative and international perspective will be discussed. Presentations by specialist guest speakers and film viewings are included.
Classroom sessions are complemented by a variety of on-site visits that include guided walking tours, visits to air-raid shelters, and other specific sites linked to the war. A study trip to Madrid focuses on Pablo Picasso’s art work, commemorative monuments to Franco, and battlefield sites.
Students will have access to the University of Barcelona's services during their stay. Upon completion of this course, students will receive an official grade transcript from the University of Barcelona.
The program begins with orientation activities such as a welcome dinner and tour of Barcelona. Other program activities may include a tapas night and farewell dinner. CASA-appointed on-site staff assist students upon arrival in Barcelona and throughout their stay.
Students are housed in double rooms in the RESA Ciutadella dorm, which is located close to the downtown area and offers an apartment-type living space with an en-suite bathroom and small kitchenette/living area. Amenities include Wi-Fi internet, a gym, and weekly cleaning and bed linen service. Participants can cook for themselves or purchase their meals in Barcelona.