Experience Put to Use
Edited By Celia M. Wallhead
Further to the first book, Writers of the Spanish Civil War: The Testimony of Their Auto/Biographies (2011), which featured the writings on the war (1936–39) of six key British and American authors: Gerald Brenan, Robert Graves, Ernest Hemingway, George Orwell, Stephen Spender and Laurie Lee, this new work studies the actions in the war of those physically involved and writings focused on the war, either at the time or later, by eight more foreign authors: Virginia Woolf, John Dos Passos, Franz Borkenau, V. S. Pritchett, André Malraux, Arthur Koestler, Martha Gellhorn and Peter Kemp. In addition to comparing their autobiographies with what their biographers said, in order to show up any discrepancies, as had been done in the first book, here, the texts are scrutinized to detect use of stereotypes or adaptation of the material to other purposes in the writing. New perspectives are introduced now in that two of the authors are women, one writing from a distance but deeply affected by the war (Virginia Woolf) and one active in journalism on the spot (Martha Gellhorn), and our final author, Peter Kemp, went to Spain to fight on the side of the Nationalists under Franco as opposed to the Republicans.
Chapter 7. Martha Gellhorn (1908–1998) Objectivity Revealed: Propaganda and the Fifth Dimension in Martha Gellhorn’s Spanish Civil War Reportage (Mauricio D. Aguilera Linde)
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MAURICIO D. AGUILERA LINDE
Chapter 7. Martha Gellhorn (1908–1998)Objectivity Revealed: Propaganda and the Fifth Dimension in Martha Gellhorn’s Spanish Civil War Reportage
‘That is what we are supposed to do when we are at our best —make it all up— but make it up so truly that later it will happen that way.’ (Hemingway, Letter to F. Scott Fitzgerald, May 28, 1934, Selected Letters 407)
In addition to ‘Zoo in Madrid’ and ‘A Sense of Direction’, two short stories which appeared in The Heart of Another (1941), Martha Gellhorn contributed to changing American public opinion about the Spanish Civil War by publishing five articles between July 17, 1937 and April 2, 1938. ‘The Third Winter’, written sometime in November 1938, ‘spiked’ by Colliers but eventually included in The Face of War (1959), must also be included here. Although not directly related to the Spanish conflict, I will also refer to her first published journalistic article, ‘Justice at Night’ (August 1936). The essays, constructed, as Rollyson states, as short stories rather than classic reports, are the following: ← 287 | 288 →
1. ‘Justice at Night’. The Spectator (Great Britain) and Reader’s Digest (US) in August 1936.
2. ‘Only the Shells Whine’ (appeared as ‘High Explosive for Everyone’, Gellhorn’s original title, in the Face of War). Collier’s, July 17 1937.
3. ‘Madrid to Morata’. The New Yorker, July 24 1937.
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