Andalusia Day (28th February)
After the fall of Franco’s dictatorship in 1977, a group of youths flew a flag from the Giralda and demanded autonomy for Andalusia. On 4th December of the same year, the now date known as Andalusia’s first national day, approximately two million people went out into the street claiming the same right to autonomy as Catalonia, the Basque country and Galicia. Juan Gay Armenteros (Jaen, 1947) a writer and lecturer in contemporary history as the University of Granada and expert in the modernisation of Mediterranean societies, shares some of his views on today’s Andalusia with Tertulia Andaluza. We have also put together a list of the people, places, books, films and music that make Andalusia such a captivating and fascinating region.
A. On 28th February we commemorate the 1980 referendum and the day the statute of autonomy for Andalusia was approved. This happened after a series of protests and demands.
Q. What have been the benefits of autonomy in the region?
A. Dignity, given that Andalusia has a well-defined and distinct personality. I also believe that the creation of the Junta de Andalucía(the Andalusian government) has brought the administration and the people closer together.
Q. Where do people from Andalusia originate from?
A. There isn’t such a thing as an “Andalusian race”. Andalusia has historically always been a region that embraced many cultures such as the Phoenicians, Romans, Arabs and Visigoths. Many cultures have come together here and the result is a very rich and diverse identity.
Q. When was the concept of Andalusia born?
A. It is an Arabic term. The concept of the al-Ándalus, which isn’t exactly what we would consider Andalusia today, came about during the Muslim invasion.
Q. And what is Andalusia today?
A. The south of Spain! It’s a region. A territorial entity. It is still an open region. It is never closed.
Q. Do you think people from Andalusia are open?
A: Very open. Despite the fact that there are now people with a more “closed character”, as they say in Granada.
Q. How will we remember this period in Andalusian history?
A. As a very good period for the whole of Spain. An incredible change has taken place over the last 30 years, much of it for the better. Living conditions have improved and materially we are all better off. We can now communicate with the rest of the world and with the rest of Spain. This was all impossible until relatively recently.
Q. How do historians celebrate Andalusia Day?
A. Just thinking about the things we are taking about now. We don’t do much else really.
Q. When I explained the idea behind Tertulia Andaluza and that we wanted to talk about contemporary Andalusia and the changes that have taken place over the last 50 years, an American writer said to me “You are going to have to twist and turn that story so that you don’t end up telling a very sad tale”. Do you agree with that?
A. I don’t believe it’s a sad story. In the past there was a lot of poverty and poverty is sad. The Civil War is sad and Andalusia suffered just as much as Valencia or Extremadura. Tell the American to take a trip around Andalusia, and he’ll see how things have changed.
Blas Infante (politician and the ideologue for the Andalusian region), Federico García Lorca (writer), Benito Zambrano (film director), Curro Amaya (Singer/songwriter from Ronda), Juan Clavero, María Zambrano, Picasso, Joaquín Sáenz, Juan Ramón Jiménez, Manuel de Falla, Joaquín Sabina, Enrique Morente, Estrella Morente, Antonio Banderas, Luis Gordillo, María Galiana, José Monge Camarón, Manolo Escobar, Joaquín Cortés, Paco de Lucia, Rafael Alberti, Antonio Machado, la Niña de los Peines, Emilio Fornieles.
The history of Seville is condensed into this one street. Get a feel for the city by walking around.
Barrio de Santa Cruz, Seville
Los Alcornocales Nature Reserve, Cadiz
The nature reserve with the largest and most impressive cork oak population in Spain.
Oficina del Espacio Natural, Plaza de San Jorge, 1
Alcalá de los Gazules, Cadiz
956413307 / 08
Valle del Rio Genal
Areas of natural beauty
Ronda mountain range
Guide 952894308, adventurebug.com
Refugio de Juanar (Ojen) – La Concha
You can see Africa on a clear winter’s day from here. 11km
These books related to Andalusia Day (28th February) may interest you.
- • DIAMOND, Jared. Colapso, 2007. Debolsillo.
- • BENÍTEZ REYES, Felipe. 1998 El novio del mundo. Tusquets Editores
- • BRAUDEL. Fernando Memorias del Mediterráneo. Cátedra
- • CERNUDA, Luis. Ocnos. Editorial Seix Barral S.A. 1998 (ISBN-10: 8432230618)
- • MACHADO, Antonio. Juan De Mairena
These albums related to Andalusia Day (28th February) may interest you.
- • MORENTE, Enrique y NICK, Lagartija. Omega. El europeo música
- • RODRÍGUEZ, Mala. Lujo Ibérico
- • CAMERATA, Che. SALDUBA. Chivo Records
- • El Lebrijano. Casablanca. EMI
- • MENESA, José. Andalucía cuarenta años
These films related to Andalusia Day (28th February) may interest you.
- • Alberto Rodríguez 2006. 7 Vírgenes. FOX (English: 7 Virgins)
- • Zambrano, Benito. Solas. (English: Alone) Maestranza Films. Más info sobre Solas - More Information about Solas
- • Jose Luis García Sánchez. 2004 María querida
- • ERICE, Victor. 1983 El Sur (English: The South)
- • Trailer - ARMESTO, Jesús. Cuento de las dos orillas 2006.
- • QUADRI, Antonio El corazón de la tierra (Eng: The Heart of the Earth)
- • Estatuto de Autonomía de Andalucía de 1981 - Andalusian Statutes of Autonomy from 1981
- • Estatuto de Autonomía de Andalucía 2007 - Andalusian Statutes of Autonomy from 2007