«We Had Won the War»

Translated with an Introduction by Barbara F. Ichiishi

by Barbara F. Ichiishi (Author)
©2013 Monographs XXIX, 185 Pages


We Had Won the War (Habíamos ganado la Guerra) is the bestselling 2008 memoir about life in post-Civil War Barcelona by the acclaimed Spanish author Esther Tusquets. Unlike the majority of Spanish postwar narratives that are written from the perspective of those who lost the Civil War and suffered under the Franco regime, Tusquets’ account recreates the era from the standpoint of the «winners.» As the offspring of an upper-middle-class Catalonian family who had sided with Franco in the armed conflict, the young Esther grew up as a privileged member of Spanish society, enjoying all the advantages that birth and material affluence could afford. The child’s initial enchantment with the glittering, sheltered world of her kin soon turns to disillusionment, as she discerns the fault lines running through the larger social landscape, and senses the hypocrisy and cruelty of her parents’ inbred clan. She finds in the inner world of literature and of the imagination compensation for a disturbing outer reality. As the growing girl struggles to find her own way, she experiments with political and religious movements that aim to forge a more just society. Her quest eventually leads to the rejection of all absolutist forms of thought and action, and to the assumption of her life’s calling as a publisher and writer. The book paints a vivid picture of life during the early Franco years, while offering an intimate, revealing look at the childhood and adolescence of one of Spain’s most remarkable contemporary authors.


XXIX, 185
ISBN (Hardcover)
Modern Spanish Literature Catalan History Spanish History Literature Womens Literature Spanish Women Writers Memoir History Spanish Post-Civil War Period Spanish Social History
New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, Oxford, Wien, 2013.<BR> XXX, 185 pp.

Biographical notes

Barbara F. Ichiishi (Author)

Esther Tusquets (1936-2012) is the author of a highly praised narrative cycle (translated into English as The Same Sea as Every Summer, Love Is a Solitary Game, Stranded, and Never to Return), which caused a sensation when the books came out in the late 1970s and 1980s, just after the end of the long and repressive Franco regime. With their daringly innovative content and prose style, the series broke new ground for the Spanish novel and for women’s writing. She published six novels, three story collections, five autobiographical works, and two children’s books. From 1960 until her retirement in 2000, Tusquets directed the distinguished Barcelona publishing house Editorial Lumen, which promoted the freedom of intellectual and artistic expression as the country evolved from an authoritarian dictatorship into a modern democracy. Barbara F. Ichiishi received a BA in French literature from Mount Holyoke College, an MA in Comparative Literature from the University of California, Berkeley, and a PhD in Spanish from the University of Iowa. She is the author of The Apple of Earthly Love: Female Development in Esther Tusquets’ Fiction, and the translator of some of Tusquets’ major works, including her novel Never to Return, her story collection Seven Views of the Same Landscape, her memoir Private Correspondence, and her historical memoir We Had Won the War. She has published articles on Spanish and Latin American women’s literature, and is co-translator of Edouard Glissant’s historical drama Monsieur Toussaint.


Title: «We Had Won the War»