Author Archive for James D. Fernández

Wikileaks, avant la Wiki: FDR on Franco in 1945 (2)

February 11, 2011
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Wikileaks, avant la Wiki: FDR on Franco in 1945 (2)

I recently stumbled across a WikiLeaks-like March 1945 letter by FDR to the new US Ambassador in Madrid, saying that the US government will hold its nose and maintain relations with the Franco regime, but that it repudiates the origins and ideology of the regime. Little did I know that this brief archival document...
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Esteban Vicente exhibition at NYU’s Grey Art Gallery

February 10, 2011
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Esteban Vicente exhibition at NYU’s Grey Art Gallery

Today I visited NYU’s Grey Art Gallery, which is hosting (until March 26, 2011) a lovely exhibition titled “Concrete Improvisations:  Collages and Sculpture by Esteban Vicente.”  I was accompanied by Julia Newman, former Executive Director of ALBA, who is also the creator of the film “Into the Fire:  American Women and the Spanish Civil...
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Parallelisms in posters: 1808 / 1936

February 10, 2011
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Parallelisms in posters:  1808 / 1936

"Expel the invader!" Posters contextualize events by inserting them into a series, into a narrative. In a subgroup of Republican Spanish Civil War posters, the struggle of the Republic against the forces of Franco, Hitler and Mussolini is likened to the popular resistance against the French invaders of 1808.
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Wikileaks, avant la Wiki: FDR on Franco in 1945

February 8, 2011
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Wikileaks, avant la Wiki: FDR on Franco in 1945

The wikileaks affaire has given us a glimpse  into the private language of diplomacy, into the kinds of things that diplomats say to each other and to their bosses when they think their remarks are off the record. Historians have always placed great value on diplomatic communiqués for precisely this reason, though they usually...
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Spaniards and Latinos in the International Brigades

February 6, 2011
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Spaniards and Latinos in the International Brigades

Last year, when Sebastiaan Faber and I tried to identify the black IBer portrayed in a picture by the great photographer Centelles, we came across a great many documents that would help a patient historian tell the relatively unknown story of the US-based volunteers from Spain and from Spanish-speaking America who joined...
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Statue of Liberty, Spanish Republic

January 27, 2011
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Statue of Liberty, Spanish Republic

Spanish postage stamp from 1937 celebrating Spain/US relations.
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Strife in the Colonia: Pro-Franco Spaniards in Wartime New York (2)

January 26, 2011
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Strife in the Colonia:  Pro-Franco Spaniards in Wartime New York (2)

Two images of political strife in Little Spain (West 14th St) during the Spanish Civil War.
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Strife in the Colonia: Pro-Franco Spaniards in Wartime New York (1)

January 25, 2011
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Strife in the Colonia:  Pro-Franco Spaniards in Wartime New York (1)

As the war in Spain dragged on, divisions among the Spaniards in New York became more and more pronounced.  The pro-Republican paper “Frente Popular” regularly “outed” the city’s Spaniards who were pro-Franco or insufficiently pro-Republic. “Figures of the Spanish Colony of NY, who, because they are fascists are in part responsible for the horrible...
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New York’s Spaniards and the Spanish Civil War

January 24, 2011
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New York’s Spaniards and the Spanish Civil War

s many of you know, the photo exhibition which I curated, "La colonia:  A photo album of Spanish Immigrants in New York, 1898 - 1945," has been up at NYU's King Juan Carlos I of Spain Center since September.  I'm delighted to announce that the show has been held over until May. The show...
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General Miaja in Brooklyn

January 23, 2011
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General Miaja in Brooklyn

In my family's photo albums is this shot of General Miaja (seated with round spectacles) --leader of the defense of Madrid-- in the living room of the Brooklyn home of my grandparents at some point during the Spanish Civil War.
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