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PostPartido Popular: Franco's Lasting Legacy (Carmen Negrin, France, 05/05/19 6:06 am)
John E (4 May) asked if today's Partido Popular can still be fairly called a Francoist party. Obviously Spain has changed and the PP like everything else has evolved. Spain has a constitution which is similar to that of most democratic countries.
But there are many reflexes that come back from time to time. Aznar, Aguirre, Abascal... are the modern version of the Franquistas.
Spanish Fascism, national-Catholicism, however you may call it, has never really been officially condemned (nor have they explained why it should be) or forbidden. Franco is still glorified, certain names of streets have not been changed in spite of a specific law that has no consequence if not applied, thousands of murdered Republicans are still in the "cunetas" or in mass graves, and as Ciudadanos put it: this is not a priority. I guess it depends for whom. People are rarely authorized to rebury their family members when they do end up finding them.
The Spanish war is like an incision in the school curriculum but somehow most kids never get to that chapter.
You might learn that Franco modernized Spain but you will never hear that prior to that he brought it back to the Middle Ages and had to modernize a minimum in order to join the UN and the rest of Europe. So basically, their conclusion is Franco only did good and Made Spain Great Again!
Young people don't know much about their past. It can be seen as a good thing, but I consider it's like living with Alzheimer!
JE comments: One of Prof. Hilton's favorite topics was comparative (by nation) school curricula. Carmen, what can you tell us about how the Civil War is taught? You suggest above that curiously, Spanish history ends for kids at...1898? 1808? 1700?
Teaching and Learning about Franco
(Carmen Negrin, France
05/06/19 5:22 AM)
John E asked about how the Franco era is covered in Spanish schools. The linked official bulletin explains on p. 9, Bloque 9, how the Republic and Civil War are meant to be taught. Note that it is very vague but that there is a special point concerning 1934, which is what, according to the Francoists, justified if not caused the war.
You can compare with the contents of the rest of the history of Spain and especially see how it is really left in the hands of whoever teaches it. But the main problem is what really comes out of it. A relatively recent poll showed that a majority of youngsters have no idea who Franco was.
JE comments: This Boletín cannot be accused of a lack of detail. It specifies that 20% of the history curriculum should be devoted to the "crisis" and the Civil War, with an additional 15% for the Franco era. Note also (p. 2) that exams should contain a minimum of two and a maximum of fifteen questions.
This is a good reminder of how much academic freedom I have.