The University of Wisconsin Press

European History / Politics / Cultural Studies


Creating Spaniards
Culture and National Identity in Republican Spain
Sandie Holguín

“No other work in any language presents the cultural goals, successes, and disappointments of the Second Republic in such an entertaining, thorough, and concise fashion.”
—David Ortíz, author of Paper Liberals: Press and Politics in Restoration Spain

Creating Spaniards is a cultural and intellectual history that explains the intersection of politics and culture, and the formation of a national identity, during Spain’s Second Republic and Civil War. It counters recent scholarship claiming that leaders of the Second Republic had no programs for “inventing traditions” to encourage a Spanish national identity.

Focusing on the Second Republic, 1931–1936, Sandie Holguín illustrates how various intellectuals and politicians of the Republican-Socialist coalition used theater, literature, and film to aid the construction of a unified Spanish culture and history. She uses memoirs, journals, newspapers, parliamentary debates, and archival sources in her examination of the impact that cultural reforms had on the transformation of one of Europe’s oldest states.

Holguín’s book makes a sophisticated argument about the cultural war in Spain and its relationship to the formation of national identity. In fact, her book is one of the first to make such a strong link. Creating Spaniards makes an important contribution to Spanish historiography and will undoubtedly be read more broadly.”
—Pamela Radcliff, University of California, San Diego

Sandie Holguín’s account of cultural politics during the Second Republic illustrates the importance of the culture wars to the conflicts in Spain during the 1930s. Holguín describes the democratic companion to better-known cultural policies of the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, and revolutionary Mexico.”
—Adrian Shubert, York University

Sandie Holguín is assistant professor of history at the University of Oklahoma.

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The cover of Holguin's book is red and black, with an old photo of several Spanish people.

October 2002
304 pp.    6 x 9
26 b/w photos, 5 maps  

Book icon Paper $29.95 s
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