Cultural activities

Spanish Post War Poetry

Spanish Post War Poetry ICManchester

The Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) had a long-term negative effect in poetic production: the Silver Age of Spanish literature, with names such as Federico García Lorca, Jorge Guillén, Luis Cernuda and Ernestina de Champourcín, came to an abrupt stop with the Spanish Civil War, and its poets either perished or were forced into exile. The destruction of war and the focus on pure survival after the war made poetry an unnecessary luxury and one that faced crude censorship. Furthermore, the circulation of works by poets in exile was also prohibited. But things would soon change: the Generation of 1936, who had suffered the Spanish Civil War and its terrible consequences, would champion existentialist poetry aimed a ‘majority’, the people of Spain who were suffering the consequences of the cruellest of wars; the poets of the Generation of the 1950s, who had experienced the Spanish Civil War as children, would years later bring with them the boom of social poetry with a markedly left-winged political view. During these years, poetry was to be regarded as a tool of change, a tool to allow communication and knowledge.

This course, taught in English and using a selection of primary sources in Spanish and English translations, will visit the poetry of the period -focusing on specific authors such as Blas de Otero (1916-1979), Jaime Gil de Biedma (1920-1990) and Luis Cernuda (1920-1963)- to further understand one of the most fascinating moments of Spanish contemporary poetry. The course comprises of five sessions (1.5 hours each) and will be taught by Diana Cullel form the University of Liverpool.

1.- Thursday, 23rd April: "Introduction: The Spanish Civil War and its consequences for Spanish Literature".

2.- Friday, 24th April: "Blas de Otero: The Generation of 1936 and existential poetry, to the immense majority". 

3.- Monday, 27th April: "Gil de Biedma: The Generation of the 1950s and social poetry".

4.- Wednesday, 29th April: "Luis Cernuda: Voices from Exile and Memories of Spain".

5.- Monday, 4th May: "Conclusions: Poetry of experience and the relevance of Spanish Post War poetry today".

As part of