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by Michael Seidman

  • ISBN: 0299249646
  • Category: Politics
  • Author: Michael Seidman
  • Subcategory: Politics & Government
  • Other formats: azw lrf docx lrf
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press; 1 edition (March 28, 2011)
  • Pages: 328 pages
  • FB2 size: 1761 kb
  • EPUB size: 1782 kb
  • Rating: 4.9
  • Votes: 465
Download The Victorious Counterrevolution: The Nationalist Effort in the Spanish Civil War fb2

The Spanish Nationalists are exceptional among y movements of the twentieth century, Michael Seidman .

The Spanish Nationalists are exceptional among y movements of the twentieth century, Michael Seidman demonstrates, because they avoided the inflation and shortages of food and military supplies that stymied not only their Republican adversaries but also their y counterparts-the Russian Whites and Chinese Nationalists. Seidman concludes that, unlike the victorious Spanish Nationalists, the Russian and Chinese bourgeoisie were weakened by the economic and social upheaval of the two world wars and succumbed in each case to the surging revolutionary left.

Seidman’s book builds upon his earlier efforts to cast the course and outcome of the Spanish Civil War in a. .

Seidman’s book builds upon his earlier efforts to cast the course and outcome of the Spanish Civil War in a new light; future scholars of the conflict will have no choice but to address the findings, interpretations, and conclusions of this important book. Bulletin for Spanish and Portuguese Historical Studies. Michael Seidman has forged a reputation as an iconoclastic social historian of the Spanish Civil Wa. Seidman notes the importance of food in keeping morale high in the Nationalist zone, which, when put in the faces of the Republicans, had the effect of reducing morale and even prompting desertions from the Republican lines.

Seidman’s book The Victorious Counterrevolution seeks to provide new perspectives on the Nationalist success in the .

Seidman’s book The Victorious Counterrevolution seeks to provide new perspectives on the Nationalist success in the Spanish Civil War. The author asserts that though there is a vast literature seeking to explain both Nationalist victory and Republican failure, there is shockingly little which analyzes the experience of civil war in Spain in comparative perspective to other civil wars, revolutions and counterrevolutions.

The Victorious Counterrevolution: The Nationalist Effort in the Spanish Civil Wa.

The Victorious Counterrevolution: The Nationalist Effort in the Spanish Civil War. Michael Seidman. Published by: University of Wisconsin Press.

The Victorious Counterrevolution : The Nationalist Effort in the Spanish Civil War. by Michael Seidman. Select Format: Paperback.

The Spanish Civil War (Spanish: Guerra Civil Española) was a civil war in Spain fought from 1936 to 1939. Republicans loyal to the left-leaning Second Spanish Republic, in alliance with anarchists, fought against a revolt by the Nationalists, an alliance of Falangists, monarchists, conservatives and Catholics, led by a military group among whom General Francisco Franco soon achieved a preponderant role.

The victorious counterrevolution. the nationalist effort in the Spanish Civil War. Published 2011 by University of Wisconsin Press in Madison, Wis. Social aspects, Economic aspects, History.

The Spanish Nationalists are exceptional among y movements of the twentieth century, Michael .

The Spanish Nationalists are exceptional among y movements of the twentieth century, Michael Seidman demonstrates, because they avoided the inflation and shortages of food and military supplies that stymied not only their Republican adversaries but also their counterparts-the Russian Whites and Chinese Nationalists. Seidman's book builds upon his earlier efforts to cast the course and outcome of the Spanish Civil War in a new light; future scholars of the conflict will have no choice but to address the findings, interpretations, and conclusions of this important book.

This groundbreaking history of the Spanish Civil War (1936–39) examines, for the first time in any language, how General Francisco Franco and his Nationalist forces managed state finance and economic production, and mobilized support from elites and middle-class Spaniards, to achieve their eventual victory over Spanish Republicans and the revolutionary left.    The Spanish Nationalists are exceptional among counter-revolutionary movements of the twentieth century, Michael Seidman demonstrates, because they avoided the inflation and shortages of food and military supplies that stymied not only their Republican adversaries but also their counter-revolutionary counterparts—the Russian Whites and Chinese Nationalists. He documents how Franco’s highly repressive and tightly controlled regime produced food for troops and civilians; regular pay for soldiers, farmers, and factory workers; and protection of property rights for both large and small landowners. These factors, combined with the Nationalists’ pro-Catholic and anti-Jewish propaganda, reinforced solidarity in the Nationalist zone.    Seidman concludes that, unlike the victorious Spanish Nationalists, the Russian and Chinese bourgeoisie were weakened by the economic and social upheaval of the two world wars and succumbed in each case to the surging revolutionary left.


Reviews about The Victorious Counterrevolution: The Nationalist Effort in the Spanish Civil War (6):
Khiceog
Very interesting thesis contrasting the Spanish Civil War with the successful Russian and Chinese revolutions. The Spanish part of that comparison is well-supported, but the Russian and Chinese parts aren't. Obviously the focus has to be on Spain, but his assertions about Russia and China needed just a little more support.

Also, there are sections that the author put in more or less just to show that he wasn't a Francoist sympathizer, which was weird.

Still, I'm glad I read it. Probably more of a 3.5 than a 3.
Uaoteowi
Interesting to see how the Spanish Nationalists, under Franco, ran the revolution against the Spanish Republic. The title uses "Counterrevolution" but in reality the Nationalist ran a revolution to depose the Spanish Republican government. Their economic regulations and actions are explained on the book and they point more to the reason for their victory and subsequent "benevolent" Franco dictatorship. Few revolutions triumph and less than that they last for any time as a successful government, the Nationalists did it in Spain and the book explains why and how they did it.
Gavirgas
Professor Seidman has written a thought-provoking--if imperfect--book on a subject that has been all-too-neglected in the ever-expanding bibliography on the Spanish Civil War, namely, everyday life behind Nationalist lines. If you have ever wondered why the Nationalists ultimately prevailed despite the significant support of the USSR and France, this book offers a unique perspective and challenges conventional scholarship.

Seidman's thesis is that the reason the Nationalists won the war had to do with their superior skill in handling seemingly non-military aspects of life like food production and distribution, monetary policy that kept prices stable and tamed inflation, their respect for the rights of property, and an efficient logistical apparatus that was, for example, able to deliver hot meals to troops on the front lines.

Seidman lays out his book in four parts. Part 1 is a brisk summary of the end of the Republic and the course of the civil war within the context of his thesis. A common theme that Seidman applies equally to both sides is that basic goods like food, shelter, companionship with the opposite sex, liquor, and cash were as or more important to many of the fighting men than was ideology. Seidman buttresses his argument by comparing the Right's success in Spain with the defeat of the Right in the USSR and China, where the Right's mismanagement of the distribution of these basic needs turned their supporters against them. The Nationalists of Spain are unique in their triumph when compared with the White Russians and Chinese Nationalists.

In Part 2 Seidman explains the methods by which the Nationalists were able to create and maintain an economy that functioned more-or-less normally: Land that had been stolen by Leftists at the early stages of the war was returned (albeit slowly) to its rightful owners, who were then ordered to farm it. To encourage peasants to farm, prices were set high enough that they could achieve a profit, yet not so high as to cause inflation. As the Nationalists gained territory, farmers saw a corresponding increase in demand. Forced labor and even suspension of public works projects were ordered in order to create extra labor to bring in crops at harvest. Seidman notes the importance of food in keeping morale high in the Nationalist zone, which, when put in the faces of the Republicans, had the effect of reducing morale and even prompting desertions from the Republican lines. The Nationalists' respect for private property inspired confidence that peasants could work hard and see some monetary benefit from their labors. Animal husbandry ensured plenty of pack animals to carry heavy loads where cars and trucks could not traverse, as well a variety of meat for soldiers to eat. Taxes were collected and citizens shamed into giving donations to support the cause. All of these factors led the international community to express confidence in the Nationalists' economy.

In Part 3, Seidman veers off-course when he introduces a sudden, sneering attack on what he terms "Catholic Neotraditionalism." It is unfortunately rather clear that Seidman does not understand, much less appreciate, Catholic social teaching. It is in this section especially that his Leftists prejudices get the better of him. His point in this section is that another crucial factor in the Nationalists' success was the imposition of Catholic morality on all aspects of society (on the front lines as well as behind the lines), thus providing a sense of social cohesion and purpose that was missing in the splintered Republican zone. His most controversial allegation is that a key pillar which held up the ubiquitous Catholic social teachings was a fanatical anti-Semitism. Pages and pages of examples of Nationalists spewing Jewish slurs in speeches, literature and letters are cited as "proof" that anti-Semitism was an unofficial position of the regime and even cites the Franco regime's opposition toward Zionism as further proof of its thoroughgoing anti-Semitic beliefs. And then, just as suddenly as he introduces his evidence, Seidman concludes that Nationalists shot very few Jews simply for being Jews; rather, they were shot for being leftists or masons, which, I should point out, is the same reason Catholics were shot by Nationalists. Certainly, given the numbers of Jews shot because they were Jews that Seidman provides, the Nationalists' murders of Jews is far less than the number who died as a result of FDR's disgraceful refusal to give refuge to the Jews aboard the St. Louis. Moreover, Franco welcomed Jews who had fled Hitler and allowed them to remain in Spain, hardly the action of a committed racialist.

Section 4 is an analysis of everyday people and the defiance of many who refused to toe the line. A strict moral code was imposed behind Nationalist lines, covering everything from immodest dress to blasphemy. Not surprisingly, not everyone was enthusiastic about adhering to these guidelines. Seidman sees in this defiance hypocrisy writ large. A more likely reason is one that Seidman misses, namely, the sudden "conversions" of Leftists who defected to the Nationalist side were, of course, not conversions at all. They were Leftists who saw no reason to die for that cause but who, under the banner of the Nationalist flag, continued to act as Leftists do. Ultimately, Seidman notes that the Nationalists were "much less successful in fighting this guerrilla war [defiance] than [they were] on the regular battlefield." Sadly, that is a correct conclusion.

For anyone who is interested in the SCW, this is a must-read. Seidman challenges long-standing assumptions and provides interesting perspectives. But this is not a perfect book. Minor yet embarrassing errors are sprinkled about: Seville, Cordoba, Badajoz and Huelva are in southwestern Spain, not southeastern Spain; moral is used for morale; and there is no such this as "script" as an ersatz currency but rather "scrip." Quotation marks are used with such terms like "reds" or "Marxist" or "pornographic" (among many others), presumably to inform the reader of the author's disapproval of the terms being perceived in a negative light. Seidman's bibliography is impressive, and includes Spanish newspapers of the day; indeed much of the primary and secondary source material is in Spanish. Still, why cite the 1963 edition of Hugh Thomas' history of the SCW when there is a newer one from a few years ago? And how can Ronald Radosh's Spain Betrayed not be cited, especially in the context of a comparative history? Nonetheless, I enjoyed reading this book and will no doubt refer to it again and again.
Jazu
...that the Nationalists (followers of Franco) who won the Spanish Civil War kept power not only through brute force (though both sides used plenty of that) but also by use of some actually smart agricultural policy in the zones they controlled. Prof. Seidman tells that story.
Faebei
While most books about the Spanish Civil War concentrate solely on the Republican side, the poor misunderstood democrats who were forward-thinking liberals who simply had no choice but to call in communists and fellow travelers to help defend their progressive state from the backward, reactionary goons of the military, whom everyone rightfully hated.

And yet, the Nationalists won. The Republicans had the infrastructure of the State, international recognition, the government bureaucracy and the unions (sorry, just being funny with that last one) but still lost to the Nationalists. Even with Italian and German assistance (and in that it was aircraft which proved to be important) how is it that the Nationalists, who controlled no major cities at the offset, had no treasury, and in fact did not even control the entire army, much less the air force and the navy, HOW did they defeat the Republicans? Thanks to Professor Seidman, now I know.

The Nationalists, in contrast to the Republicans, pursued sensible monetary policies (while the Republican currency plummeted in value, despite holding the gold reserves). The Nationalists largely respected property rights while also making sure that food-growing land was productive. The Nationalists set up the means to keep people fed in the Nationalist Zone and was especially careful to make sure soldiers were fed on time, while Republican confiscatory policies caused food hoarding and fallow ground. Finally, The Republicans proved themselves unable or unwilling to enforce law and order in the Republican Zone.

The Republicans had sought before the war to demoralize the army (literally) by eliminating the chaplain corps. The Republican war against religion had serious repercussions for their cause, repercussions almost as bad as the ones caused by their cavalier attitude towards property rights. On the other hand, The Nationalists' use of anti-semitism as a way of attacking "Reds" was counter-productive to Spain in the long-term, as Franco would find out after WWII was over.

A very good book, if a bit dry in places. For me, this book completed the picture. Unlike the Chinese Nationalists or the Russian Whites, the forces of Spain's Nationalists respected property... and as Ayn Rand said, without property rights, the others have no meaning.

Illustrated with some maps and photos.

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