Graphic Witness: visual arts & social commentary
Graphic Witness home page

Franco's Black Spain
Drawings by Luis Quintanilla; commentary by Richard Watts, Jr.

Franco's Black Spain pages 19-21


Even the gloomy Spanish fascists had their little joke. Under the Republic the peasants who had suffered from feudal rule appealed for agrarian reform and were given their own land to till. When Franco had his triumph these beneficiaries of the brief Republican rule were shot down in mass executions, while the fascists, with their rich sense of humor, said: "Here is real Agrarian Reform! A piece of land for every dead man."


Another jest highly regarded in Black Spain. Watching the condemned peasants dig their own graves prior to the mass executions.


There seems to have been a particular pleasure in executing schoolteachers. At least, it has been estimated that nearly eleven thousand of them were shot down by Franco's Crusaders for the crime of telling young Spaniards about such things as liberty and equality. Of course, their books were burned, too.