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The routes to exileFrance and the Spanish Civil War refugees, 1939-2009$
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Scott Soo

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780719086915

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719086915.001.0001

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Coming to terms with the Spanish republican exile in France

Coming to terms with the Spanish republican exile in France

(p.1) Introduction Coming to terms with the Spanish republican exile in France
The routes to exile

Scott Soo

Manchester University Press

Why is the Spanish republican exile in France of such historical importance± When discussing the origins and development of this exile why might we use the notion of ‘routes’ as opposed to ‘roots’± This introductory chapter sets out to answer these questions by assessing the scale and nature of French responses to the Spanish Civil War refugees’ arrival along with how these refugees differed from other migration episodes. What emerges from this discussion is the need to reconsider the notion of exile in relation to both the refugees and their hosts. While the narratives of return, nostalgia and paralysis are often central to cultural representations of the Spanish republican exile, this introductory chapter explains how a different set of characteristics emerge when focusing on the lived experiences and memories of exile in France. The result is a call for historical contingency and the enabling properties of remembrance to be incorporated into our understanding of the Spanish republican exile.

Keywords:   Exile, Spanish Civil War, Immigration, France, Commemoration

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