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From Mobilization to Civil War


  • 6 maps
  • Page extent: 376 pages
  • Size: 228 x 152 mm
  • Weight: 0.72 kg


 (ISBN-13: 9780521562133 | ISBN-10: 0521562139)

This is a social history of political polarisation as it evolved in one city over three and a half decades before the Spanish Civil War. As such it is a book about the long-term origins of the War as seen 'from below'. More broadly it is an analysis of the evolution of political culture during the transition from elite to mass politics. The book focuses on the interplay between the three main forces that competed for political control: the conservative monarchist/Catholics, the democratic republicans, and the revolutionary trade movement. It is different from other Civil War studies, in trying to understand the relationship between organised political forces and the 'masses' they sought to reach. In doing so it reveals a rich canvas of participants and activities, from trade unions and strikes to female consumer riots.

• Broadens the traditional narrow political and economic accounts of the origins of the Spanish Civil War by examining local political culture • Uses a new 'origins' framework of a three-way struggle for power • Integrates women and gender into the political narrative of the Spanish Civil War


Introduction; 1. A turning point: the city in 1900; Part I. Patterns of Life in Working-Class Gijón: 2. The structural context: economy, demography and urban space, 1900–1936; 3. Culture and community in working-class Gijón; Part II. Institutional Forces of Opposition: Republicans and Anarchosyndicalists: 4. The republican parties and municipal politics, 1900–1930; 5. The republicans in power: municipal politics, 1931–1936; 6. The trade union movement, 1900–1936; Part III. Defining an Oppositional Culture: The Struggle over the Public Sphere: 7. Republican culture: a nation of citizens; 8. Labour movement culture: 'the brotherhood of workers'; Part IV. The Urban Battlefield: Conflict and Collective Action, 1901–1936: 9. Conflict and collective action, 1900–1923; 10. Conflict and collective action during the Republic, 1931–1936; Conclusion.


'… well focused and soundly based … This is precisely the type of book that has been so seriously lacking in the historiography of contemporary Spain'. History

' … this important new study is a vital contribution to the contemporary history of Spain and to the history of polarisation and protests in modern Europe'. English Historical Review

'… highly challenging and provocative as well as controversial … This is, without doubt, a convincing and illuminating analysis of popular mobilization, social struggle, and conflict, evolving from the initial consumer and food riots to more organized forms of collective action in a society in transition from elite to mass politics.' Historical Journal

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