Blogs in this series

Life in Culebrón is personal view of Spain and Spanish life as seen by a Briton living in a small village in Alicante province.
The other tabs link to similar blogs when I have lived in other places. The TIM magazine is an English language magazine I write articles for.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

More on street names

Over on Life in Cartagena I published a short piece about street names. About how they are small clues to the history of the country and the people it honours.

Now that we only come here for weekends I'm not really keeping up with the local news so, just now, I was sifting through the Pinoso websites trying to catch up. On one of them there was a lot of political toing and froing reliving some of the old Francoist/Republican arguments. After a bit of digging around it seems that the reason is that the local Socialist party suggested at the last full council meeting that several street names should be changed. The street names celebrate Francoist victories and heroes of the last Spanish Civil War.

There's a recentish national law that says that all the stuff that glorifies the old dictatorship should be removed from public places - statues, street names, commemorative plaques etc. The Socialist suggestions were for names of Socialist heroes and, not surprisingly, the right of centre parties were't too taken with that idea. It now remains to be seen whether, at the next council meeting, the majority right wingers maintain their opposition to name changes or if they compromise on safe anodyne names.

The photo is of Rafael Sánchez Mazas. As well as having a street named after him in Pinoso he was a writer and thinker associated with the formation of the Falange party in 1933 along with José Antonio Primo de Rivera. He was a minister in Franco's Government in 1939 and 1940 and he wrote some of the lyrics for the Fascist anthem of the time.

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