A provocative, brilliant, and groundbreaking historical
reconsideration of the roots of Spanish culture.
We all carry in our heads a seductive picture of what Spain
stands for: its music, painting, buildings, and history. But much
of what we think of as Spanish culture is, in fact, the invention
of a very specific group: the Spanish in exile.
Historian Henry Kamen creates a vivid portrait of a
dysfunctional, violent country that, since the destruction of the
last Muslim territories in Granada in 1492, has expelled wave after
wave of its citizens in a brutal attempt to create religious and
social conformity. Muslims, Jews, Protestants, liberals,
Socialists, and Communists were all driven abroad at different
times, and Spain's enormous contribution to European culture is
largely a result of these rejected peoples--their creative response
both to having no home and to the shock of encountering new worlds.
A landmark work, "The Disinherited" describes with illuminating
sympathy the travails of these unwanted societies and the enduring
"virtual" culture they imagined often thousands of miles from their
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