Framed by the current concern in Spain for the recuperation of historical memory, this paper focuses attention on the exiled graphic artist Francisco Rivero Gil and his “Aleluyas de la defensa de Euzkadi”, created to mobilize popular support for the Pro-Euzkadi Week organized in Barcelon by the Catalonian government after the bombing of Guernica. Formally resembling a comic strip, the aleluya was a popular traditional broadsheet format, normally composed of forty-eight illustrated panels, distributed on a one-sided page in eight rows of six, with a two-line verse under each. It was part of an extensive body of traditional print material known as “literature de cordel” or “string literature”—a name derived from its form of commercial display, hanging on lines of string in streets and plazas to increase visibility—destined for the popular classes and widely held to have played a fundamental role in the socialization of reading. The propagandistic value of Rivero Gil’s modernized aleluya was closely tied to its didactic function of educating a modern citizenry.
|Keywords:||Aleluya, Illustrator, Francisco Rivero Gil, Pro-euzkadi Week, Graphic Arts, Orality, Barcelona, Spanish Civl War, Popular Tradition, Anarchism, Sociability, Comic, Bombing of Guernica|
Graduate Student, Department of Spanish and Portuguese, University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, USA