By Orwell, G. and Symon, J
In this chronicle of his stories as a militiaman within the Spanish Civil conflict, George Orwell brings to endure all of the strength of his humanity, ardour and readability, describing with sour depth the intense hopes and cynical betrayals of that chaotic and brutal episode in eu history.
'An unrivalled photograph of the rumours, suspicions and treachery of civil battle' Anthony Beevor
comprises explanatory footnotes, in addition to an appendix of got rid of chapters from the 1st edition.
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Extra info for Homage to Catalonia
My centuria slept in one of the stables, under the stone mangers where the names of the cavalry chargers were still inscribed. All the horses had been seized and sent to the front, but the whole place still smelt of horse-piss and rotten oats. I was at the barracks about a week. Chiefly I remember the horsy smells, the quavering bugle-calls (all our buglers were amateurs – I first learned the Spanish bugle-calls by listening to them outside the Fascist lines), the tramp-tramp of hobnailed boots in the barrack yard, the long morning parades in the wintry sunshine, the wild games of football, fifty a side, in the gravelled riding-school.
I am not writing a book of propaganda and I do not want to idealize the POUM militia. The whole militia-system had serious faults, and the men themselves were a mixed lot, for by this time voluntary recruitment was falling off and many of the best men were already at the front or dead. There was always among us a certain percentage who were completely useless. Boys of fifteen were being brought up for enlistment by their parents, quite openly for the sake of the ten pesetas a day which was the militiaman’s wage; also for the sake of the bread which the militia received in plenty and could smuggle home to their parents.
In four or five months in the POUM militia I only heard of four men deserting, and two of those were fairly certainly spies who had enlisted to obtain information. At the beginning the apparent chaos, the general lack of training, the fact that you often had to argue for five minutes before you could get an order obeyed, appalled and infuriated me. I had British Army ideas, and certainly the Spanish militias were very unlike the British Army. But considering the circumstances they were better troops than one had any right to expect.