Alan Munton
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How gender serves Trotskyism
The Spanish Civil War in Ken Loach’s Land and Freedom
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The Spanish Civil War began as a revolution and became the most important small war of the twentieth century. Land and Freedom, Ken Loach's film about the Spanish Civil War, explained the complex politics of this war for a new generation when it was released in 1995. Land and Freedom attempts to validate the Trotskyist point of view by means of a narrative in which political processes and a love story are skilfully related. A vigorous anti-Stalinism is inseparable from Trotskyism, but Loach's screenwriter, Jim Allen's remarks on Stalin and Spain in the production notes to Land and Freedom go beyond what is plausible. The Spanish revolution was betrayed by Stalin and by the social democrats because 'they preferred Franco to the possibility of a workers' state'. It is possible to discern differing attitudes towards gender and gender issues among the parties of the Spanish left.

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