Identities in Conflict
Edited By Flocel Sabate
Agrarian Colonization and Francoist neo-traditionalism
← 248 | 249 → Agrarian Colonization and Francoist neo-traditionalism
Daniel CARMONA, Raúl TRAVÉ
Universidad Miguel Hernández
General Franco’s Agrarian Colonization Project, which was carried out instead of the Agrarian Reform Law planned by the government of the Second Spanish Republic, spread lots of new villages across the Spanish geography. Within the context of the controversy provoked by the recovery of historical memory in Spain1, the agrarian colonization villages have been one of the major issues in dispute, as some considered them to be part of “Franco’s Heritage”2, a fact that is not only patent in place names, which still refer to the former Head of State (Llanos del Caudillo, in the province of Ciudad Real, for instance), but also in their very existence, which is yet another clear proof of the fact that today’s Spain has not entirely broken with its past.
More than three hundred villages were built as part of the Agrarian Colonization Project between the beginning of the 1950s and the end of the 1960s. Although the INC (Instituto National de Colonización)3 was created in 1939, colonization plans were not implemented until the 1950s because of the economic problems of the post-war period. These plans were carried out mainly in rural regions where land ownership was highly concentrated. The INC expropriated (and paid a fair price for) uncultivated ← 249 | 250 → and unused plots from big landowners, which they then equipped with hydraulic infrastructures (from which landowners’ non-expropriated plots could take advantage too)...
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