Sons of Night: Antone Gimenez’s Memories of the War in Spain
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A fascinating memoir of the Spanish Civil War as well as a new approach to writing history, The Sons of Night is two books in one. First is Antoine Gimenez’s Memories of the War in Spain, a compelling and lyrical account of his experiences in the Spanish Civil War. The other is In Search of the Sons of Night by the Gimenologues, a group of friends who became historians over the twelve-year adventure of publishing Gimenez’s memoir. The second book, a profoundly innovative form of historiography, records the fascination Gimenez’s account held for the group and the many branching paths of inquiry it led them down. The latter begins with eighty-two “endnotes” to the memoir, each the equivalent of a chapter that follows a particular historical thread or explores a question raised by Gimenez’s text. This is followed by the biographies of various people appearing in the memoir, many based on the friendships the historians formed with the now-elderly revolutionaries. The book closes with an Afterword discussing theoretical issues raised by the memoir and seven appendices. It also includes a foreword by Dolors Marín Silvestre.
Praise for Sons of Night
“At times, Sons of Night reads like Ernest Hemingway’s famous Spanish novel For Whom the Bell Tolls, except this of course is memoir, not fiction. If Gimenez’s tales seem too incredible to be entirely true, the book features an extensive and exhaustive historiography that backs up, as far as possible, all his claims.”
—Ramor Ryan, Toward Freedom
“I’m not used to books that tell you how to read them. At the start you’re advised to read Antoine’s account straight through, and then read it again with the end notes from part two. It works, but you may need another go round. Bring two bookmarks, some blank paper and an open mind. Listen to the sons and daughters of the night. As the Giménologues say ‘the history of the social war in Spain will never be over until we have done with the world that made it a possibility, and a necessity.’”
—Kate Sharpley Library
Antoine Gimenez (the pseudonym of Bruno Salvadori) was born in 1910. He was an anarchist militant and a volunteer militiaman who fought in the Durruti Column during the Spanish Civil War. He died in Marseille in 1982.
The Gimenologues are a small group of friends who have become historians by dedicating themselves to the twelve-year process of publishing Memories of the Spanish War by Antoine Gimenez, first in French, now in English.