Poetic injustice: 5 British poets who died fighting Fascism

British Battalion, Spanish Civil War

Rightly considered by many contemporary observers to be a pivotal turning point with a decisive effect on Europe’s future, it should come as no surprise that the Spanish Civil War became something of an obsession for a generation of politically conscious young Britons. Many such men and women travelled to Spain to fight Fascism as members of the International Brigades – foreign volunteers for the Republican side, thought to number up to 35,000. Among the 500 British casualties were several poets and writers who have become symbolic of the deeply ideological struggle and emotional turmoil that first divided Spain, and then reverberated across the continent in the late 1930s.

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