Hell and Good Company: 2 of 4: The Spanish Civil War and the World it Made by Richard Rhodes.


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Photo: Image from page 248 of "Things seen in Spain. With fifty illus" (1921)

Identifier: thingsseeninspai00hart

Title: Things seen in Spain. With fifty illus

Year: 1921 (1920s)

Authors: Hartley, C. Gasquoine (Catherine Gasquoine), 1867-1928


Publisher: London : Seely, Service

Contributing Library: University of California Libraries

Digitizing Sponsor: Internet Archive

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he241 Things Seen in Spain sensitive stranger will feel again that heunderstands the cruelty that has surprisedhim sometimes in the character of herpeople. It was from the Moors that the Spaniardsinherited their readiness to sacrifice them-selves for a cause, and this genius for sacrificehas made them heroes, martyrs, and con-spirators ; it has given them their strength,and also their weakness. This people canresign themselves to anything, and resigna-tion can just as easily be heroism or mereapathy. The heroic side of this power gaveSpain the greatness of her past history; theother side, the resignation that is apathy,may be seen everywhere in Spain to-day.One instance is the beggars who follow youin the streets of every town, with their in-cessant cry for alms. There is terriblepoverty in Spain, of which these hordes ofbeggars are but a too genuine sign Begging-is a profession of which no one is ashamed.And what impressed me most was that onlyrarely did the beggar appear unhappy.242

Text Appearing After Image:

MLfNICIPAL PLAZA AND SOUTH FACADE OF THE FAMOUS OLDCATHEDRAL-SEAT OF THE PRIMATE OF SPAIX^ TOLEDO. About Many Things They all seemed to find their own enjoymentin that open-air life in the sun which is thehappiness of Spain. I recall one beggarwho always sat at the door of the Cathedralof Leon. He was very old. The cloak inwhich he was wrapped was so worn andthreadbare that one wondered how the ragsheld together. He never appeared to move ;through each day he kept the same position.His face was a mass of wrinkles whichshowed strongly from the ingrained dirt.There was a patient humour in his eyes,which were still bright. His face remindedme of Velazquez picture. He seemed quitecontent when I refused his cry for alms, sothat I gave the answer that Spanish courtesydemands, Perdone usted, por el amor deDios ! (Excuse me, brother, for the love ofGod !). He hardly troubled to hold out hishand. It was warm where he sat in thesunshine; a shadow from the sculpturedfigures of saints and angels,

Hell and Good Company: 2 of 4: The Spanish Civil War and the World it Made by Richard Rhodes.


From the Pulitzer Prize–winning and bestselling author of The Making of the Atomic Bomb—the remarkable story of the Spanish Civil War through the eyes of the reporters, writers, artists, doctors, and nurses who witnessed it.

The Spanish Civil War (1936–1939) inspired and haunted an extraordinary number of exceptional artists and writers, including Pablo Picasso, Joan Miro, Martha Gellhorn, Ernest Hemingway, George Orwell, and John Dos Passos. The idealism of the cause—defending democracy from fascism at a time when Europe was darkening toward another world war—and the brutality of the conflict drew from them some of their best work: Guernica, For Whom the Bell Tolls, Homage to Catalonia, The Spanish Earth.

The war spurred breakthroughs in military and medical technology as well. New aircraft, new weapons, new tactics and strategy all emerged in the intense Spanish conflict. Indiscriminate destruction raining from the sky became a dreaded reality for the first time. Progress also arose from the horror: the doctors and nurses who volunteered to serve with the Spanish defenders devised major advances in battlefield surgery and front-line blood transfusion. In those ways, and in many others, the Spanish Civil War served as a test bed for World War II, and for the entire twentieth century.

From the life of John James Audubon to the invention of the atomic bomb, readers have long relied on Richard Rhodes to explain, distill, and dramatize crucial moments in history. Now, he takes us into battlefields and bomb shelters, into the studios of artists, into the crowded wards of war hospitals, and into the hearts and minds of a rich cast of characters to show how the ideological, aesthetic, and technological developments that emerged in Spain changed the world forever.

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