Post-transitional justice in Spain: passing the historic memory law

Hajji, Nadia

This paper traces the origins of the post-transitional justice efforts by the Spanish government
to recognize and offer reparations for the human rights crimes committed during
the Spanish Civil War and subsequent Franco dictatorship. After a delay of at least
thirty years, reparation legislation was enacted in 2007 with the passage of the Historical
Memory Law, which is regarded as one of Spain’s most ambitious measures to address its
past human rights violations. This thesis argues that three main factors encouraged the
Law’s passage. First, Spanish involvement in foreign social justice shined a spotlight on
Spain’s own unsettled past. Second, the maturation of a younger generation that did not
experience the worst years of the dictatorship turned public opinion in favor of reparation.
Finally, the Law was introduced under opportune political circumstances and encompassed
minimal reparations in order to receive the necessary congressional vote.


Also Published In

The Journal of Politics and Society

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Academic Units
Helvidius Group
Helvidius Group of Columbia University
Published Here
November 1, 2014