May 2014
Journal of Politics & Society;May2014, Vol. 25 Issue 1, p83
Academic Journal
This paper traces the origins of the post-transitional justice efforts by the Spanish government to recognize and offer reparations for the human rights crimes committed during the Spanish Civil War and subsequent Franco dictatorship. After a delay of at least thirty years, reparation legislation was enacted in 2007 with the passage of the Historical Memory Law, which is regarded as one of Spain's most ambitious measures to address its past human rights violations. This thesis argues that three main factors encouraged the Law's passage. First, Spanish involvement in foreign social justice shined a spotlight on Spain's own unsettled past. Second, the maturation of a younger generation that did not experience the worst years of the dictatorship turned public opinion in favor of reparation. Finally, the Law was introduced under opportune political circumstances and encompassed minimal reparations in order to receive the necessary congressional vote.


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