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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 2, No. 4 March 29, 1939



Unhappy Spain is today in everyone's mind. What made a country divide against Itself? made Spaniard employ the foreigner to slaughter fellow Spaniard? Was the Government the real legal Government? What were the facts of the Asturias revolt? To answer these questions we must have a reliable knowledge or events leading up to the Civil War.

Such knowledge is to be gained from "The Spanish Tragedy," by E. Allison Peers.

For a writer to be an authority he must (1) know his subject; (2) be unbiassed.

Peers, now Professor or Spanish in the University or Liverpool, has spent a great deal of the last 20 years in Spain, living among the people, mixing with both the highbrow and the lowbrow. He should therefore have a good knowledge of Spanish life and conditions, and of recent Spanish history.

"While complete Impartiality is difficult of achievement, I have tried to describe the events of those years with all possible objectivity, and party politicians will look in vain for their pet exaggerations." That Peers has achieved this is evident, since "The Spanish Tragedy" Is recommended by both loyalist and rebel. "An authoritative work,' says the pro-Franco man; "A book which is decidedly useful" says the Loyalist.

"Spain is not Britain, nor France, nor Americe, but herself—unique in many ways." The causes of the war are bound up in the nature of Spain and the Spaniards. Allison Peers is one of the few impartial men with sufficient local knowledge to attempt to explain them.


"There is one thing that my enemies cannot do to me: they cannot make me hate them.

—Romain Rolland.