Introduction

Visual Index (Entire Poster Collection)

Catalogue

Chronology of the War

Acknowledgements

Lists of References

Afterword: Herbert R. Southworth Collection


 

Jornalers agricoles, que fins ara heu viscut sota el règim oprobiòs i envilidor del salari, petit conreadors, que fins ara no heu tingut prou terra per attendre les necessitats de la vostra família, el Decret de redistribució de terres, de data 14 d'agost del 1937, us ofereix la possibilitat d'obtenir la terra necessaria per a convertir-vos en conreadores lliures i independentes. Demaneu la terra que us fa falta a la Junta Municipal Agraria

[Farm workers, until now you have lived under the shame and degradation of the wage system; small farmers, until now you have not had enough land to meet the needs of you families. The Decree on Land Distribution of August 14, 1937, makes it possible for you to obtain the land necessary to make you into free and independent farmers. Request the land you need from the Municipal Agrarian Committee.]. . Direcció General d'Agricultura Poster, 3 colors; 99 x 68 cm

In this poster, a farmer works his field with his horse and plow. It is a fitting image for a poster announcing that small farmers can obtain land from the local government. In the text, the previous wage system is associated with "shame and degradation" with the implication that the redistribution of the land to small farmers will avoid such results. Also, there is the promise of subsistence and independence for small farmers. This message may have been especially appealing during the war when the economy of Cataluña was adjusting to wartime production and many people were experiencing a scarcity of foodstuffs.

Although the Spanish Civil War is most remember as a conflict between Nationalist and Republicans, the war also provided a context in which various communist, socialist and anarchist groups in Republican Spain could try out various plans for the revolutionary reform of Spanish society and economy. The spirit of reform in Republican Spain was often directed toward the agricultural situation. Since the majority of Spain's agricultural resources were in the territories of Nationalist Spain, it was incumbent upon the Republican government and various local governments to develop and increase agricultural production in their parts of the country.

In the Republican zone, two main strategies were attempted to support and develop agricultural production during the war. First, there were reforms and legislation to support development of the land by private property owners and those who cultivated the land. Decrees of the Catalonia government, including the Agrarian Reform Law, hoped to free sharecroppers and others who worked the land from their responsibilities to an absentee landlord. Second, there were attempts in Andalusia and Republican-controlled Aragon at collectivization. The collectivization of agriculture paralleled that of industry in the cities. Yet, in Aragon, collectivization of agriculture was short lived as it was dissolved in August of 1937. In fact, the decree mentioned in this poster may be a product of this move to dissolve the earlier attempts to collectivize agriculture in the region.

 
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