The Spanish Civil War has had a profound and lasting impact on Britain. At least 2400 Britons volunteered to fight for the Spanish Republic (of whom more than 500 died), while others provided medical assistance, visited Spain in delegations, or covered the Civil War as journalists. In this collection of three of his published articles and seven new essays, all based on primary research, Tom Buchanan sheds light on many facets of this complex relationship. The book's central themes are the impact of loss on families and communities, and the importance of Spain itself -- its history and culture -- in the way that the Civil War was understood in Britain. Some of the chapters deal with individuals involved in the Civil War, such as the writer John Langdon-Davies, the artist Felicia Browne and the journalist GL Steer. Others pursue somewhat neglected themes, such as the response of British artists to the war or the role played by British medical personnel. The final two chapters focus on the long-term impact of the conflict on British politics and on Britain's relations with Spain since 1939.
Tom Buchanan is Reader in Modern History at the University of Oxford Department for Continuing Education, and a Fellow of Kellogg College. He is the author of two previous books and numerous articles on Britain's involvement in the Spanish Civil War, as well as Europe's Troubled Peace, 1945-2000 (Blackwell, 2005).