Spanish Literature

spanish literature

The history of Spanish literature can be traced back centuries and it is clear that over this time, Spanish language has not only been influenced by the events happening within Spain and across the world, but has also influenced the world itself.

Spain has produced some fantastic writers in all genres, many of whom were instrumental in the developments of some of the biggest literary movements.

Spanish literature has a huge array of must-read books, but to read them all would take you uncountable years. These are the most iconic works of the Spanish literature, from the first manifestation during the 12th century to the great poems of Federico García Lorca.

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History of Spain

The history of Spain absorbs that of the nations within the Iberian Peninsula (Andorra, Gibraltar, Portugal and Spain) once known as Hispania. Modern humans populated this territory for the first time 32,000 years ago, among the different cultures that developed in the process were the Iberians, the Tartessians, the Celts, the Celtiberians, the Phoenicians, the Greeks, the Carthaginians, Romans, Suebi and Visigoths.

The history of Spain is marked by the invasion of the Moors, a Berber and Arab army that took over the entire Peninsula in 711 AC and kept it for 750 years in which the then Muslim territory, became known as Al-Andalus. Ever since the Moors took over this territory the Christian kingdoms in the north struggled to recover it, in a process they called the Reconquista, which in English grammar would be translated as re-conquest.

This process ended when Granada finally fell in 1492, the year in which the Kingdom of Spain was created joining the kingdoms of Aragon and Castile, and the same year in which Christopher Columbus made his first trip to the New World.

spain history

With the new establishment of the kingdom came the inquisition that expelled all the Jews and Muslims that did not wish to convert from the country and the capital of the capital of the country was established in Madrid on February 12th of 1561.

This point marks the beginning of the expansion of Spain, that for three centuries would become the most powerful state in the Europe map and a leading global force; Spanish arts prospered during this epoch and the empire covered lands from California to Patagonia in the Americas, Philippines in Asia, part of the cost of Africa in the western pacific, becoming one of the largest and greatest empires of history.

Although the transcendence of Spain after the Moors lead them to engage in religious wars and intrigues that made them gain and lose possessions in Netherlands, Italy, France and Germany and start wars with Ingland, Sweden, France and the Ottomans in the Mediterranean Sea and northern Africa, all of which despite being largely sustained by the reaches of their colonies led the empire into great economic damage. It was the war of Spanish Succession which would eventually result in the Spanish Kingdom losing its position as a global leader to Russia, although it remained

Although during the 18th century Spain was successful in deflecting the revolutionary forces of its American colonies in search of independence, in the first part of the 19th century the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars that generated uproar throughout all Europe left a large part of Spain in the hands of the of Napoleon’s brother Giuseppe Bonaparte and an otherwise inevitable successful independence of most of the Spanish colonies in America.

Devastated by the war, Spain went through and overwhelming political struggle of parties such as liberal, reactionary and moderate groups, none of which prevailed long enough to provide any stability to the country that despite accompanying the rest of Europe in a continual growth did not end until the 20th century, in which Spain was severely affected by its civil wars that ended in the dictatorship of Francisco Franco that controlled Spain until his death in 1975.

spain in europe

Spain remained neutral in both world wars although many Spanish fought in both sides of the second. The post-war decades were moderately stable in spite of the great destruction and poverty still around and Spain has continuously showed economical development since then regardless of the remaining tensions in the Basque region, slight turmoil with the Muslim immigrants and the terrorism known as ETA.

Spain now forms part of the European community, has organized the world cup of 1982, the Olympic games in 1992, celebrates the universal exposition of Seville as well as the discovery of America by Christopher Columbus, and was the first nation around the world to make legal the marriage, and the right of adoption to couples of the same sex.