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anonymous asked:

If you don't mind an intimate question: In what way has your family been wronged or mistreated by the Spanish government throughout the ages? Have your predecessors suffered under the fascist regime?

Hey!

to a certain extent, everyone in the Catalan countries has been mistreated by the Spanish government (or the French government, depending on where in the Catalan countries you are). Even the small things that seem “normal” here and we go through everyday (still nowadays!) but that would not be normal in a “normal country”, such as being it considered rude to speak your native language, never knowing when your language will disappear since the State’s gov constantly keeps making laws against it, your people being considered stupid for having an accent when speaking Spanish, your language being considered unimportant and secondary, not getting much media translated to your language so kids grow up thinking it’s only to be used at home, not in public, and a very long etc. And ofc the mockery and threads for speaking your language and being from your country… (All this also applies to other nations under Spanish rule, like Euskal Herria and Galicia)

But since you specifically asked about my family during the fascist regime, here’s some of our stories.

  • Two of my great-grandfathers, one a member of the CNT and the other a member of the UGT, both militias that fought against Franco’s troops, were forced to go on exile. They both ended at Argelès’ concentration camp, and one was killed in the Mauthausen concentration camp and the other went on exile to Venezuela. Obv this affected the rest of their families, who were left without a father, without a reliable source of money, etc
  • Several members of my family were imprisoned and tortured for being suspected Catalanists and/or antifascists. The most recent one in the late 60s, was imprisoned for almost a year far away from his family and constantly suffering torture.
  • One of the other family members that was imprisoned was another great-grandfather who had been in the town council as part of ERC (a Catalanist party). My grandfather still gets scared when someone knocks the door, bc he remembers how every night he and his brother heard the Spanish fascist police knocking on their neighbours’ doors, many of them never coming back, and they knew one day they would come to take their father, as they eventually did.
  • My parents and grandparents were beaten at school for speaking Catalan.
  • Sometimes seeing how the teacher beat the other kids in front of everyone was worse. My mother will never forget a couple of her teachers (one in particular) throwing children to the floor and kicking them in the head repeatedly, even a long time after the child was crying.
  • Everyone’s names had to be changed to Spanish Catholic names. My grandmother’s name Llibertat (meaning “Freedom” in Catalan) was changed to María de la Encarnación (”Mary of the Incarnation”), and even names that were already Catholic had to be translated to Spanish (e.g. my grandfather Josep had to be called José)

This is just some things. Of course everyday life, when all this things and more came together, was harder.

Lastly, I’d like to bring some attention to the more than 114.000 bodies of antifascists from all around the Spanish state that were thrown to the cunetas (street seewers?) and whose families haven’t found the yet, while the current Spanish government is not helping at all.

I encourage other Catalans (and Basques and Gallegos as well) to explain their family’s stories under fascism if you want to.

Thank you for showing interest, anon :)

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Mujeres Libres, or Free Women, was an anarchist women’s organization in Spain that aimed to empower working class women. It was initiated in 1936 by Lucía Sánchez Saornil, Mercedes Comaposada and Amparo Poch y Gascón and had approximately 30,000 members. 

In revolutionary Spain of the 1930s, many anarchist women were angry with what they viewed as persistent sexism amongst anarchist men and their marginalized status within a movement that ostensibly sought to abolish domination and hierarchy. Conditions for Spanish women before the Spanish revolution were oppressive, in the sense that they could be forced into arranged marriages without their consent and single women were not allowed to leave their homes without a male chaperone. Furthermore, working conditions were difficult for women because their salaries were half what male workers received. The limited rights allowed to women were only offered to middle and upper class women, and not offered at all to the working class. 

The organization was based on the idea of a “double struggle” for women’s liberation and social revolution and argued that the two objectives were equally important and should be pursued in parallel.

From the amazing documentary Living Utopia: Anarchism in Spain. [video]

Image taken from issue No. 10 (pub. Dec. 1993) of Montreal based anarchist publication entitled SAOIRSE. This image was used in a piece recounting personal stories from the front lines of the Spanish Civil War.

From what I can tell, this publication has long been out of print. I can’t find any further info about it online. If you have info, feel free to share it!