Ghosts of Spain

Ghosts of Spain

Travels Through Spain and Its Silent Past

Book - 2007
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The appearance, more than sixty years after the Spanish Civil War ended, of mass graves containing victims of Francisco Franco's death squads finally broke what Spaniards call "the pact of forgetting"--the unwritten understanding that their recent, painful past was best left unexplored. At this charged moment, Giles Tremlett embarked on a journey around the country and through its history to discover why some of Europe's most voluble people have kept silent so long.

Ghosts of Spain is the fascinating result of that journey. In elegant and passionate prose, Tremlett unveils the tinderbox of disagreements that mark the country today. Delving into such emotional questions as who caused the Civil War, why Basque terrorists kill, why Catalans hate Madrid, and whether the Islamist bombers who killed 190 people in 2004 dreamed of a return to Spain's Moorish past, Tremlett finds the ghosts of the past everywhere. At the same time, he offers trenchant observations on more quotidian aspects of Spanish life today: the reasons, for example, Spaniards dislike authority figures, but are cowed by a doctor's white coat, and how women have embraced feminism without men noticing.

Drawing on the author's twenty years of experience living in Spain, Ghosts of Spain is a revelatory book about one of Europe's most exciting countries.

Publisher: New York : Walker & Co. : Distributed to the trade by Holtzbrinck, 2007.
Edition: 1st U.S. ed.
ISBN: 9780802715746
0802715745
Branch Call Number: 946.081
Characteristics: 386 p. : 25 cm.

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WVMLStaffPicks Oct 27, 2014

In chronicling Spain's vibrant present Giles Tremlett, Madrid correspondent for The Guardian, disturbs the ghosts of Spain's past. Voices of the Spaniards he meets in his travels speak of the appalling atrocities committed by both sides during the Civil War, long hidden by a "pact of forgetting." While writing incisively about Basque separation, the gypsy roots of flamenco and the Madrid train bombings, Tremlett also includes highly personal accounts of living and raising a family in Madrid. Part modern social history, part travelogue, this is an affectionate and elegantly written book.

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