Discovering the silenced: the Italian participation in the Spanish Civil War

International Seminar

Case studies of the Basque Country, Catalonia and Italy


The organizing team of this seminar has spent many years working, researching and disseminating information on the Spanish Civil War. But, a subject that always remained pending to be addressed –with more calm and depth– was that of the Italian participation in the Civil War. With this seminar, which brings together experts from different parts of the Spanish state (Basque Country and Catalonia) and from Italy, we intend to begin to delve into an exciting subject, creating ties of knowledge and exchange by exploring the context of the Italian participation in the Spanish Civil War. Through the presentations that will take place on December 2 and 3, 2022, participants will be aware of some of the main research carried out in recent years; the documentary treasures hidden in so many archives and documentation centres will be discovered; the legal context will be analysed and pedagogical and artistic initiatives aimed at the younger generations will be shown.

The seminar will be held in Spanish and Italian. For online attendance as listener, please register here before November 30, 2022.

Organized by the Gernika Peace Museum Foundation, the City Council of Granollers, and the European Observatory on Memories of the University of Barcelona Solidarity Foundation.


December 2 | Friday

12,00 pm -01,15 pm
Memoritour Gernika: Guided tour to discover the anti-aircraft shelters (optional)

1,15pm -2,15 pm
Lunch break

2,15 pm -3,45 pm
Guided visit to the Gernika Peace Museum (optional)

4,00 pm -4,30 pm
Presentation of the International Meeting
Place: Gernika House of Culture (online session will be available)
Participants: Iratxe Momoitio (Museo de la Paz de Gernika), Jordi Guixé (EUROM) and Carme Barbanys (Ajuntament de Granollers)

4,30 pm -6,00 pm
Symbolic reconciliation and diplomacy. Examples of what was lived in Gernika and Montesole
Moderator: Iratxe Momoitio Astorkia, Director of the Gernika Peace Museum

  • Maria Oianguren. Director of Gernika Gogoratuz
    “Citizen diplomacy in reconciliation processes as peace pedagogy practices”
  • Elena Monicelli. Coordinator of the Fondazione Scuola di Pace di Montesole
    “The present of memory: trauma, responsibility, recognition of the other in the educational practice of Monte Sole”

6,00 pm – 8,30 pm
Context and starting point: Italian participation in the Spanish Civil War
Presents and moderates: Ricard Conesa, European Observatory on Memories (EUROM)

  • Angel Viñas, historian (online)
    “Franco efforts fascist aid: the beginnings”
  • Javier Rodrigo Sánchez, professor at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB)
    “A lesson for the future. Fascist intervention in the Spanish Civil War, revisited”
  • Pedro Barruso Barés, Professor at the Complutense University of Madrid
    “The Italian intervention: a military and diplomatic perspective on the Northern Front”
  • Carlo Greppi, historian (online)
    “Luck was missing, not courage. The historical responsibilities of fascism in the Italian public debate”

December 3 | Saturday

The investigation into the Italian participation in the Civil War
Moderator: Ana Teresa Nuñez. Head of the Documentation Center on the Bombing of Gernika

  • Enricco Acciai , Historian – University of Rome “Tor Vergata”
    “The Italian participation in the Spanish Civil War: between a complex historiography and a forgotten memory”.
  • Ramon Arnabat and Ginés Puente Pérez,  Historians and professors at the University Rovira i Virgili (URV) and members of the ISOCAC research group.
    “Italian participation in the air siege of Barcelona and the search for justice and reparation”
  • Jon Irazabal, Researcher – Durango 1936 Kultur Elkartea
    “Durango, March 31: overture for a tragedy”
  • Mirco Carrattieri, Coordinator of the Scientific Committee of the Italian Liberation Route
    “Yesterday in Spain, today in Italy. Italian signs and places of memory of the Spanish civil war”

Coffee break

Archives: The hidden treasures to shed light and show what happened
Moderator: Maria Oianguren. Director of Gernika Gogoratuz

Ana Teresa Nuñez, Head of the Documentation Center on the bombing of Gernika
“The documentation center for the bombing of Gernika and research in the Italian archives”

  • Edoardo Grassia, Historian
    “The legionary bombardment aviation and its documentation”
  • Jimi Jiménez Sánchez, Historian and researcher, Durango 1936 Kultur Elkartea
    “The bombardment of Durango from the documentary sources”
  • Gemma Bigi, Director of Istoreco, Institute for the History of Resistance and Contemporary Society of the Province of Reggio Emilia.
    “The two faces of a war: industrial archives, biographical archives”
  • Isabella Proia (online), Archivio Storico Diplomatico (Rome, Italy)
    “The funds of the Diplomatic Archive of the Farnesina for the study of the Italian participation in the Spanish Civil War”

Discussion and questions about the morning sessions

Lunch break

State of the matter at the legal level
Moderator: Jimi Jimenez

Laura Medina Ferreras, Lawyer, human rights defender
“The criminal process for the Italian bombings”

How to work at the educational level and the transmission of memory with the following generations

Moderator: Celeste Muñoz. EUROM

  • Jordi Guixé, Director of EUROM
    “EUROM and the actions for the transmission of the memory of the bombings”
  • Carlo Ridolfi, National Coordinator of the Cultural Association RETE di Cooperazione Educativa
    “Rete de cooperazione educativa. More practical examples of work in schools”
  • Idoia Orbe Narbaiza, Head of the Educational Department of the Gernika Peace Museum
    “Online educational materials to address the Civil War, the bombing of Gernika and exile”
  • Enrica Leone (online), High school literature teacher
    “How to transmit this story to the new generations and at school”

Coffee break

Moderator: Carme Barbanys. Granollers City Hall

  • Elena Bissaca (online), Educator and expert on memory trips in Italy
    “Educating with memory, the pedagogy of the journey”
  • Sabin Ibazeta, Lertxundi Bachelor of Fine Arts and secondary school teacher. Member of Gernika Batzordea
    “Gernika, Laborategi Esperimentala (experimental laboratory)”
  • Roberto Bortoluzzi, Head of the didactic and training department of the Institute for the History of the Resistance and Contemporary Society of the Reggio Emilia province
    “From Reggio Emilia to Barcelona: a possible route through places, history and memory”.
  • Agnès Boixader Corominas, Retired teacher. Member of the Advisory Council of Can Jonch, Center of Culture for the Peace of Granollers
    “What kind of memories do we need to build more justly democratic societies? Experience in Granollers

Social and artistic memory in both communities
Moderator: Jon Argintxona Badiola Gernika Batzordea

  • Maitane Azurmendi, Artist and member of Lobak
    “The work of Lobak (grandchildren) in the transmission of memory”
  • Elettra Stamboulis, School director, writer and art curator
    “Post-traumatic memory and comics: how the Civil War became drawing”
  • Daniela Aronica, Journalist, editor and professor at the University of Barcelona
    “The Spanish civil war in the non-fiction cinema of Fascist Italy”
  • Camino Saiz, Cia Gernika garretan Kultur Elkartea
    “Gernika Garretan, a collective experience of Memory and performing arts”


December 4 | Sunday

Meeting at the Gernika Peace Museum to discuss and work further work, including the possibility of organizing joint teaching material on this issue (2022-2023).


Dec 2-4, 2022


Share This
Skip to content