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Barcelona and the Tragic Week of 1909: A crazed mob or citizens in revolt?

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The Tragic Week of 1909 was one of the most disruptive events in contemporary Spanish history. This article seeks to reconsider the nature of the events based on the previously unseen personal archive of the then interior minister Juan de la Cierva. Evidence indicates that the chaotic, anticlerical, anti-military nature of the events should not be exaggerated, since there were many different motives. It also suggests that we should look beyond Barcelona. The uprising actually affected dozens of Catalan municipalities, it was to a certain extent coordinated, included very few anticlerical attacks outside the city of Barcelona (and even within the city they were not the only expression of revolt), and featured no anti-military discourse. A fundamental feature of the Tragic Week, of which the authorities were fully aware, is that it was also a revolutionary, republican uprising.
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Keywords: Juan de la Cierva; Tragic Week; anarchism; anticlericalism; republicanism; violence

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Universitat Rovira i Virgili 2: Universidad de Murcia

Publication date: March 1, 2016

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  • The International Journal of Iberian Studies (IJIS) is the academic journal for scholars from around the world whose research focuses on contemporary Spain and Portugal from a range of disciplinary perspectives. IJIS is interested in history (20th century onwards), government and politics; foreign policy and international relations.
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