Soldiers despite themselves. The volunteers of the International Brigades and military discipline

Author/s Enrico Acciai
Publishing Year 2013 Issue 2013/271
Language Italian Pages 23 P. 210-232 File size 317 KB
DOI 10.3280/IC2013-271002
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The historiography on the anti-Fascist volunteers in Spain during the civil war has been long conditioned by overly political prejudices, their image being thus depicted along as clear-cut as rather unsatisfactory lines. A common topic in the memoirs written by the IB veterans are the hard life conditions they experimented during their service. This study investigates the origins of such narratives, trialling the common assumption that these corps were highly disciplined simply because of the repressive methods of the communist headquarters. The A. first focuses on the discipline reigning inside the International Brigades as a whole, in order to ascertain to what extent the attitude vice versa adopted by the Spanish headquarters of the Popular Army might have encouraged a good few episodes of insubordination. Further on, the A. deals with the Italian case, examining the question of the denied leaves of absence that would often stir up discontent among the rank and file of the Garibaldi Brigade. Key words: Spanish civil war, International Brigades, anti-Fascism, volunteers, military discipline

Keywords: Spanish civil war, International Brigades, anti-Fascism, volunteers, military discipline

  1. Daniel Kowalsky, The Soviet Union and the International Brigades, 1936-1939, “The Journal of Slavic Military Studies”, 2006, n. 4. DOI: 10.1080/1351804060102852

Enrico Acciai, Soldati loro malgrado. I volontari delle Brigate internazionali e la disciplina militare in "ITALIA CONTEMPORANEA" 271/2013, pp 210-232, DOI: 10.3280/IC2013-271002