Homage to Catalonia is George Orwell’s personal account of the Spanish Civil War of 1936, which saw Franco’s fascists lined up against socialists and anarchists.
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Orwell took part as a militiaman in the left-wing anti-stanilist party POUM. The war the author describes is not the one we might mistakenly imagine, also influenced by 21st century film works. It is a war of positions, exhausting and stressful. George Orwell describes camp life at that time: the endless hours of waiting, the incessant rain that makes the ground muddy, the bunkers dug at best and shared by dozens of comrades-in-arms, the crabs, the tattered clothes, the outdated weapons, the scarcity of ammunition. In Barcelona, however, the situation is completely different. As if the war were just a scary story to admonish children to go to bed early and not throw tantrums, people live carefree lives, social hierarchies are broken down and an air of well-being hovers everywhere.