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A Concise History of the Spanish Civil War

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  103 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews

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An account of the Spanish civil war which portrays the struggles of the war, as well as discussing the wider implications of the revolution in the Republican zone, the emergence of brutal dictatorship on the nationalist side and the extent to which the Spanish war prefigured World War II.

No war in modern times has inflamed the passions of

Published September 16th 1996 by Fontana Press (first published 1978)
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Greg Brozeit
May 28, 2016 Greg Brozeit rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
This was the second book of a personal, occasional reading list to better understand authoritarianism and fascism. Preston’s book reads like a concise précis, short on poetry, but still a very valuable overview for those interested in the Spanish Civil War who would rather not delve into every excruciating detail of this tragic mess. The primary lesson for me is how the divisiveness of the Left led to the success of the relative unified pursuit of the goal of victory of the Right.

Another import
Jan 12, 2015 Gary rated it it was amazing
This was an excellent exploration of the how the internal & external forces of communism vs capitalism as well as democracy vs autocracy played out within Spain in the late '30s. Particularly interesting was how the great democracies stayed away from the conflict because of the role Russia played on the side of the Republic. I recommend this book to anyone who is looking to better their understanding of the forces that would eventually culminate in WWII.
I'm not a big reader of history book (or even non-fiction), and although I found it difficult to get into, it was extremely well-written, challenged my preconceptions of the war, and made me a lot better informed. It is easy to take sides in the Spanish civil war, but Preston has managed it and gives an unbiased, fair review of the war itself and the causes of it. My only problem (other than I found it difficult to get started), was that it didn't really talk about the aftermath of the war at al ...more
Feb 26, 2014 Emma rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
a short history of the Spanish Civil War, much like the title says. I enjoyed reading this, it is well written in a clear style, and the author did his best to accurately depict the conflict from both sides. A nice starting point if you want to learn something about this particular event.
Jan 07, 2015 Yan rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I typed out a couple of paragraphs on this and then goodreads ate it! Summary: fascinating subject matter, very dry prose, a strange number of spelling errors.
Rob Innis
Jul 18, 2012 Rob Innis rated it really liked it
Excellent overview of the SCW written by a very knowledgeable leading expert. Recommended for those who don't want to take on the more mighty tomes.
Thomas McIlroy
Quite an easy read for an A-Level historian studying the Spanish Civil War.
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Paul Preston, author of Franco and Juan Carlos, holds the Príncipe de Asturias Chair of Contemporary Spanish History at the London School of Economics. He lives in London.
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