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Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Alondra Room
Ask not for Whom the Bell Tolls: Who was Fighting Whom as Seen in Literature. R.J. Sender, J.M. Gironella, E. Hemingway and George Orwell

Novels, memoirs, propaganda, and historical sketches in print and film (see You Tube) deal with the Spanish Civil War in multiple sound bites. The speaker will give his audience the means to find the outside edges of this incredible puzzle.  Not a puzzle of ideologies, political courage, political cowardice, or foreign intervention but a puzzle of millions of individual human beings killed, maimed, disappeared, and displaced. Individuals all for whom the bell tolls. 

Mr. Tom Lew, Dean of the Humanities, will introduce Dr. Bernie Rang.


10:15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.

Alondra Room


When we were Refugees. The Royal Navy and its Humanitarian Role in Asturias (1936-1937).

When the hostilities broke out in Spain in the summer of 1936, the Royal Navy, at the time one of the most powerful ones in the planet, sent its ships to rescue the British nationals who had been surprised by the war. For 15 months, while the hostilities lasted in the north of the country, His Majesty´s Ships would breast the waves of the Bay of Biscay giving protection to the British merchant ships which were involved in the profitable business of evacuating the civilian population from the beleaguered ports of the north of Spain.

 Silvia Ribelles de la Vega's lecture on "When we were Refugees. The Royal Navy and its Humanitarian Role in Asturias"


 Adam Hochschild's lecture on "Americans in the Spanish Civil War"  

11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Alondra Room
Americans in the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939)

For several years starting in 1936, volunteers helped Spain’s democratically elected government battle an uprising by right-wing army officers heavily backed by Hitler and Mussolini. Some 2,800 of the volunteers were Americans, the only time so many of our countrymen—and women—have taken part in another nation’s civil war.

Dr. Silvia Ribelles de la Vega, Spanish Instructor at El Camino Community College, will introduce Mr. Adam Hochschild.




Wednesday, November 9th, 2016

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Alondra Room
Balancing Partisanship:  The New York Times Coverage of the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939 

In December 1937, the New York Times was caught in a journalistic scandal when reporter William Carney was caught fabricating news stories for the paper but was not fired. This episode not only reveals that much of what Americans read about the Spanish Civil War was highly partisan but that the basic standards of “objective reporting” and neutrality were different from what we understand them to be today.

Mrs. Kate McLaughlin, Journalism Professor at El Camino College, will introduce Dr. Julie Prieto.



10:15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.
Alondra Room
Federico García Lorca (1898-1936): Music, Poetry and Performance

For Federico Garcia Lorca, music, poetry, and performance were interrelated.  Music was a constant presence in his life and profoundly affected his poetry, whose lyrical character –evident in titles such as ‘songs’, ‘ballads’, ‘suites’, ‘waltzes’ and ‘variations’, is displayed fully in his plays, particularly his tragedies, where characters employ poetic language and sing songs in a series of performances that confirm Lorca’s belief that “the theatre has always been in the hands of poets.”

Dr. Morris's lecture will be followed by three three songs by Federico García Lorca interpreted by Dr. Alicia Class (voice) and Professor Jon Minei (guitar).

Mr. Tom Lew, Dean of Humanities, will introduce Dr. Brian Morris.

 Dr. Brian Morris' lecture on "Federico García Lorca: Music, Poetry and Performance"


Ramon Duarte Alvarez's lecture on "Eighty-year-old Cement: Military fortifications in Asturias from the Spanish Civil War Era"  

11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Alondra Room
Eighty-year-old Cement: Military fortifications in Asturias from the Spanish Civil War Era

For fifteen months, a small community in the north of Spain suffered a bloody and fierce battle that left profound scars in the society and in the landscape. Eighty years later, the society has changed, but the traces in the landscape remain. Hundreds of fortifications stoically resist the passing of time, waiting patiently to be discovered by the newer generations.

Ambassador Javier Vallaure, Consul General of Spain in Los Ángeles, will introduce Mr. Ramón Duarte.


 Andres Moina's lecture on "Picasso’s Guernica: The Art of Destruction"


1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
Alondra Room
Picasso’s Guernica: The Art of Destruction

Picasso's most famous work, the mural-sized oil painting titled Guernica, is certainly his most powerful political statement, painted as an immediate reaction to the Nazi's devastating bombing on the Basque town of Gernika on April 26, 1937, during the Spanish Civil War. Nowadays “Guernica” is considered modern art’s most powerful anti war statement  and an artistic symbol of the destruction of war on innocent lives.

Walter Cox, Fine arts Associate Dean, will introduce Mr. Andrés Moína.




Thursday, November 10th, 2016

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

Alondra Room


Spanish Exile in Mexico

Between 1939 and 1942 some 25,000 Spaniards were admitted as refugees in Mexico by the then president Lázaro Cárdenas del Río . They fled the retaliation by the new government that had been formed in Spain after the rebel generals won a civil war that devastated the country between 1936 and 1939. Among the refugees there were politicians, members of the military, high government functionaries who had fought for the vanquished, but also skilled workers, peasants and many intellectuals.

Ambassador Carlos García de Alba, Consul General of Mexico in Los Ángeles, will introduce Mrs. Ludivina García Arias.


10:15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.

Alondra Room


Digging up our Ancestors: Mass Graves and the Law of Historic Memory

“In April 1939, my great-grandfather was handcuffed and taken to a prison in the city of Guadalajara, Spain. He had never killed anyone. But he was a leftist, the Spanish Civil War had just ended, and there was no room for those who had rallied support for the antifascist political movement. Francisco Franco’s forces did not keep him alive much longer. On November 15, 1939, my great-grandfather and seventeen other men were shot dead in Guadalajara. He was one of the 822 Republicans executed in this city between 1939 and 1944. Tens of thousands of other unidentified victims lie somewhere alongside roads and unmarked tombs throughout the country. He left behind his widow and children, among them my grandmother. Ever since that day of April, my grandmother, Ascensión Mendieta, has wished she could exhume and recover her father's remains. Although the Spanish political parties and the government have not allowed the exhumation of bodies for decades, an Argentinean court challenged the Spanish justice system and ordered that my great-grandfather's common grave be dug up. The Spanish justice first refused to execute the order. But facing mounting pressure from the media and other actors, it finally gave the green light and my great-grandfather's grave was dug up earlier this year.”
-Aitana Vargas

Dr. Silvia Ribelles de la Vega, Spanish Instructor at El Camino College, will introduce Ms. Aitana Vargas.


11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Haag Recital Hall


Flamenco as a Tool for Nation Building

Under Francisco Franco, many Spanish artistic traditions were suppressed, especially those that were perceived to value regionalism and cultural diversity. During this time, all cultural activities were subject to censorship, and many were forbidden entirely. Interestingly, Flamenco, a regional music and dance tradition that emerged in Andalusia, was privileged during this era and was used to repress Spain’s cultural diversity. Dr. Andrade’s presentation will discuss how, starting in 1939, flamenco has become as an art form that promotes Spanish nationalism in the national and international consciousness, a performing art that is perceived to advance a unitary national identity. The presentation will also include a music and dance demonstration.

Dr. Xocototzin Herrera, History Professor at EL Camino College, will introduce Dr. Argelia Andrade.



Saturday, November 12th, 2016

7:30 p.m.

Marsee Auditorium



Commemoration Concert

The concert will be the official closing event of the 80th Anniversary of the Spanish Civil War International Conference at El Camino College.  The program features students from the guitar program (Directed by Prof. Jon Minei) and the 19-piece Concert Jazz Band (Directed by Dr. Alan Chan), with works including guitar and big band music with Spanish influences and from the swing era.



Month of November, 2016

ECC Library Hall

Constatino Suárez, Adolfo Armán and Florentino López Fernández “Floro”

Photography Exhibition

“Three Photographers from the Different Contending Sides in the Spanish Civil War” (1936-1937) 

This exhibition shows black and white pictures shot between the summer of 1936 and the winter of 1937 in the towns of Oviedo and Gijón, in northern Spain, during the first twenty months of the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939).

 Photography Exhibition

Two photographers, Adolfo Armán and Florentino López Fernández "Floro" , show in their pictures the civilian population of Oviedo,  the volunteers and the troops resisting the attacks of the enemy and going on their daily life in the besieged town.  Oviedo was the only town that took up the arms against the legitimate Republican government in the region. There are also shots of the aftermath of air raids and artillery attacks over the town, and the ruins of buildings, which were later used for propaganda purposes.In Constantino Suárez´s photos of his hometown, Gijón, we can perceive the echoes of the photographic vanguards of the 1920 and 1930s. They are more artistic, but they reflect the wish of the photographer to document the life of the population in the Loyalist town, which would be the last stronghold of the Republic in the north, before the collapse of that front in the fall of 1937.  Oviedo and Gijón are a mere 14 miles away from each other. The photos were carefully selected from the collections held at the MUSEO DEL PUEBLO DE ASTURIAS (Gijón, Spain) and ARCHIVO MUNICIPAL DE OVIEDO (Oviedo, Spain), who have generously lent the images to El Camino Community College for the exhibition.


Last Published 12/21/16