Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


The Spanish Civil War was a war of ideologies, and it involved more voluntary individual participation than any other major war of this century. Two of the participants in and literary recorders of the war were Ramon Sender and Ernest Hemingway. The purpose of this study is to examine and compare the Spanish Civil War fiction of these two men. The works considered are: Seven Red Sundays, Counterattack in Spain, and The King and the Queen by Ramon Sender, and The fifth Column, “Old Man at the Bridge”, “The Denunciation”, “The Butterfly and the Tank”, “Night Before Battle”, “Under the Ridge”, and For Whom the Bells Tolls by Ernest Hemingway. The works of the two men are in many ways similar. Both deal with political, ethical, and social problems. Both appear to be more interested in presenting the people involved in the war than in propounding any particular Party-line. Sender romanticizes the Spanish peasant, and seeks to justify the revolution that preceded the Rebellion in Seven Red Sundays, to demonstrate the courage of the Loyalists in Counterattack in Spain, and to allegorically picture the struggle of the Spanish peasant to attain the ideal world in The King and the Queen. Hemingway attempts to justify the Loyalist position in The Fifth Column, deals with the problem of an old man left homeless and friendless by the Fascists in “Old Man at the Bridge” provides several inconsequential vignettes of war life in the other short stories, and delves into the ideal that lead men to fight fascism in For Whom the Bells Tolls. The works of Sender suffer from insufficient control and insufficient characterization, although The King and the Queen suffers much less from these defects than do the other works. In the final analysis, regardless of their relative artistic merit, all of the Civil War works of Sender and Hemingway reflect their feelings and attitudes toward the last great war of ideological conflict.


Clifford Edwards

Date of Award

Summer 1965

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


© 1965 Norman M. Dungan


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