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Distributed for University College Dublin Press

In Spanish Trenches

The Mind and Deeds of the Irish Who Fought for the Republic in the Spanish Civil War

Distributed for University College Dublin Press

In Spanish Trenches

The Mind and Deeds of the Irish Who Fought for the Republic in the Spanish Civil War

In the late 1930s, the Spanish Civil War was both a cause célèbre and a true international flashpoint, garnering support from thousands from Europe and the Americas who saw the fight as a crucial bulwark against the spread of global fascism. In this book, Barry McLoughlin and Emmet O’Connor offer the first history of the Irish role in the International Brigades, the famed military units who counted such notables as George Orwell, Simone Weil, and Ernest Hemingway among their ranks. “The Spanish Trenches are Here in Ireland” explores how the fight for democracy in Spain was more than just a foreign abstraction to the hundreds of Irishmen who joined the International Brigades: they saw it as an extension of the struggle for freedom they’d launched barely two decades earlier in their homeland.

​Drawing on previously unseen Spanish archival sources and including a definitive list and short biographies for each Irish member of the International Brigades, McLoughlin and O’Connor offer a fascinating study of the political mindset of Ireland’s supporters of the Spanish Republic at a revolutionary moment in both nations’ histories.

400 pages | 8 color plates | 6 1/4 x 9 1/4

History: British and Irish History


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Table of Contents

1)Introduction (McLoughlin/O’Connor)
2)Ireland and the SCW: the setting, Spain and Europe in 1936, clericalism and anti-clericalism in Spain and Ireland, politics in Ireland (O’Connor)
3)Northern Ireland and the SCW: contrasting perspectives of Unionists and nationalists on Spain (O’Connor)
4)First actions: Madrid, Lopera, and the defection of the Irish from the British battalion to the Lincoln battalion in January 1936 (O’Connor)
5)Blood and Boredom at the Jarama: February-June 1937 (McLoughlin)
6)Frank Ryan and the politics of the SCW in Ireland (O’Connor)
7)Republican offensives (I): Pozoblanco, Brunete (McLoughlin)
8)Republican Offensives (II): Aragón, Teruel (McLoughlin)
9)Retreat and Capture, March 1938: Irish POWs (McLoughlin)
10)Frank Ryan’s trial and imprisonment, 1938-1939 (McLoughlin)
11)Attempts to Frank Ryan Released, 1939-1940 (McLoughlin)
12)The Irish volunteers: discipline, desertion and punishment (McLoughlin/O’Connor)
13) Over the Ebro: Last battle of the Internationals, July-September 1938 (McLoughlin)
14) Withdrawal, homecoming, and the politics of commemoration (O’Connor)
15) Conclusion (McLoughlin/O’Connor)

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