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José Antonio Primo de Rivera: The Reality and Myth of a Spanish Fascist Leader

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Volume 3

Studies in Latin American and Spanish History

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José Antonio Primo de Rivera

The Reality and Myth of a Spanish Fascist Leader

Joan Maria Thomàs
Translated from the Spanish by John Bates

373 pages, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78920-208-3 $149.00/£110.00 Hb Published (May 2019)

eISBN 978-1-78920-209-0 eBook

Hb View cartYour country: United States - Click here to remove geolocation   Buy the eBook! $34.95 Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format) Recommend to your Library Available in GOBI®


“This is a most informative study. The impressive knowledge of the author, one of the leading specialists of Spanish fascism, is visible on nearly every page.” • Historische Zeitschrift

“This judicious and outstanding biography is essential for all scholars of twentieth-century Spain.” • Bulletin of Spanish Studies

Praise for the Spanish edition:

“[A] definitive and up-to-date biography that sheds new light on the brief life of one who wanted to “direct the course of the great ship of the Fatherland.” • El País

“Although José Antonio has aroused an inexplicable sympathy within certain precincts of the Left, this biography by Joan Maria Thomàs erases any doubt about his ideology.” • Revista de Libros


There are few individuals in modern Spanish history that have been as thoroughly mythologized as José Antonio Primo de Rivera, a leading figure in the Spanish Civil War who was executed by the Republicans in 1936 and celebrated as a martyr following the victory of the Falangists. In this long-awaited translation, Joan Maria Thomàs provides a measured, exhaustively researched study of Primo de Rivera’s personality, beliefs, and political activity. His biography shows us a man dedicated to the creation of a fascist political regime that he aspired to one day lead, while at the same carefully distinguishing his aims from those of the Falangists and the Franco Regime.

Joan Maria Thomàs is Professor of Contemporary History at the Rovira i Virgili University. He is the author of many books on Falangism, fascism, and Spanish history, several of which have been translated into English. He is a member of the American Historical Association and a Corresponding Member of the Royal Academy of History.

Subject: History: 20th Century to Present
Area: Southern Europe


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