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Unlikely Warriors

Richard Baxell



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Aurum Press
01 December 2012
When a Nationalist military uprising was launched in Spain in July 1936, the Spanish Republic's desperate pleas for assistance from the leaders of Britain and France fell on deaf ears. Appalled at the prospect of another European democracy succumbing to fascism, volunteers from across the Continent and beyond flocked to Spain's aid, many to join the International Brigades. More than 2,500 of these men and women came from Britain, Ireland and the Commonwealth, and contrary to popular myth theirs was not an army of adventurers, poets and public school idealists. Overwhelmingly they hailed from modest working class backgrounds, leaving behind their livelihoods and their families to fight in a brutal civil war on foreign soil. Some 500 of them never returned home. In this inspiring and moving oral history, Richard Baxell weaves together a diverse array of testimony to tell the remarkable story of the Britons who took up arms against General Franco. Drawing on his own extensive interviews with survivors, research in archives across Britain, Spain and Russia, as well as first-hand accounts by writers both famous and unknown, Unlikely Warriors presents a startling new interpretation of the Spanish Civil War and follows a band of ordinary men and women who made an extraordinary choice.
By:   Richard Baxell
Imprint:   Aurum Press
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm,  Spine: 47mm
Weight:   454g
ISBN:   9781845136970
ISBN 10:   1845136977
Pages:   400
Publication Date:   01 December 2012
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Richard Baxell is a research associate at the London School of Economics and a trustee of the International Brigade Memorial Trust. He is the author of a number of books and articles on British volunteers for the International Brigades, during the Spanish Civil War of 1936-1939. His previous works include the critically acclaimed British Volunteers in the Spanish Civil War: The British Battalion in the International Brigades, 1936-1939. With Jim Jump and Angela Jackson, he is a co-author of the IBMT's travelling exhibition, Antifascistas and the accompanying book.

Reviews for Unlikely Warriors

'Billed as the first comprehensive account of the more than 2,500 British men and women who volunteered to fight in the Spanish Civil War' Bookseller 'Baxell's authoritative book draws on unpublished memoirs as well as personal interviews with a tiny band of survivors who lived their experience, in the poignant words of one volunteer, as 'a time of hope, when a man with a rifle had some power to divert the tide of human affairs.' Military History Monthly

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