Current research

On the forefront of recent scholarship about the Valley of the Fallen is Fernando Olmeda’s 2009 book, Valle de los Caídos: Una memoria de España (Valley of the Fallen: A Memory of Spain). Olmeda’s stated objective with his book is to provide a glimpse of Spain’s history “without preconceived ideas,” in an effort not to open old wounds, he says, but to heal them. An El mundo book review references the articles of the Law of Historical Memory relevant to Valley; click here for the review, Valle de los Caídos: Una memoria de España

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The End of Silence, 2008, is a Swedish documentary.  The filmmakers Martin Jonsson and Pontus Hjorthen, propose to uncover the past “swept under the carpet by a pact of silence.”  Jönsson was a television news reporter and editor at TV4 before working as an investigative journalist from 2003 to today. He has a degree in journalism from Gothenborg and is the founder and editor of philosophical magazine The Nausea 1992-1998. Pontus Hjorthén got is degree in Spanish language and Culture and society of Ancient Rome and Greece at Gothenburg as well. He has worked as a translator for BCT, Babel lingua as well as Bonniers as well as a writer and journalist for many Swedish newspapers. Since 1997, Pontus works as a translator, bricklayer and journalist in Granada. The following link Mari Carmen España–The End of Silence features a 9 minute clip, in which the directors interview an abbot at the Valley of the Fallen about the polemics that now seem to define the memorial. (The End of Silence was produced by:Tussilago, Linnegatan 5, 41304 Göteborg, Sweden, tfn: (+) 46 31 711 7555, fax: (+) 46 31 775 9232, E-mail: robert@tussilago.se, Co-produced by SVT-Göteborg, WestDeutscher Rundfunk.)

The following link El Follonero vs Francisco Franco is a YouTube video clip of a popular late night comedy TV show in Spain, Buenafuerte. In the clip, a regular character on the show, aka El Follonero, travels to the Valley, lightly making fun of Fascist ideals, at one point even teasingly whispering img_2583.JPGto Franco’s grave that gays can now marry one another in Spain. In another clip from the program, actors impersonating gay Falangists dance on the grounds of the Valley, Gay Falangists . The irony here (homosexuality was condemned by the Franco regime) is evidence that Spain has broken its pacto del olvido, that the Spanish people can openly confront the legacy of the national past of war and dictatorship, even making jokes about formerly taboo topics, twisted into comic relief on formerly sacred ground.

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