The Spanish Civil War, the Soviet Union, and Communism

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Yale University Press, Oct 1, 2008 - History - 416 pages
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In this compelling book Stanley G. Payne offers the first comprehensive narrative of Soviet and Communist intervention in the revolution and civil war in Spain. He documents in unprecedented detail Soviet strategies, Comintern activities, and the role of the Communist party in Spain from the early 1930s to the end of the civil war in 1939.

Drawing on a very broad range of Soviet and Spanish primary sources, including many only recently available, Payne changes our understanding of Soviet and Communist intentions in Spain, of Stalin’s decision to intervene in the Spanish war, of the widely accepted characterization of the conflict as the struggle of fascism against democracy, and of the claim that Spain’s war constituted the opening round of World War II. The author arrives at a new view of the Spanish Civil War and concludes not only that the Democratic Republic had many undemocratic components but also that the position of the Communist party was by no means counterrevolutionary.


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The Spanish Civil War, the Soviet Union, and communism

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Often considered the opening round of World War II, the Spanish Civil War of 1936-39 has long been treated as just that and not much more. Payne (A History of Fascism, 1914-1945) argues that the ... Read full review

Selected pages


The Soviet Decision to Intervene Militarily JulyOctober 1936
Soviet Military Participation 19361939
The Policy Struggle under the Largo Caballero Government September 1936May 1937
The Negrín Government 19371938
Defeat 19381939

Communism and the Spanish Revolution JulyAugust 1936

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About the author (2008)

Stanley Payne has taught history at several universities, including Columbia University, University of California, Los Angeles and the University of Wisconsin. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a corresponding member of Real Academia Espanola de la Historia, Madrid. He has received various awards and prizes, most recently the Marshal Shulman Book Award of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies (2005) and the Gran Cruz de Isabel la Catolica from the Spanish government (2009). He has been co-editor of the Journal of Contemporary History since 1999. Professor Payne is the author of more than 20 books and 150 articles, as well as co-author or co-editor of 9 books. Most recently, he is the author of The Collapse of the Spanish Republic, 1933 1936: Origins of the Civil War, Franco and Hitler: Spain, Germany, and World War II, Spain: A Unique History and Civil War in Europe, 1905 1949.

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