«Spain for Europe» and «Europe for Spain» Concepts in Discussions of Spanish Intellectuals

Anastasiia Khmel

Ph.D. (History), Associate Professor

Petro Mohyla Black Sea National University

Mykolaiv, Ukraine

УДК 327.33(460+4)”18/19″

DOI: http://doi.org/10.17721/2524-048X.2020.15.10

Concepts «Spain for Europe» and «Europe for Spain» in discussions of Spanish intellectuals.

The study analyzes the views of Spanish thinkers and historians, most notably of «Generation 98», about Spain’s role in Europe and vice versa. The problem of the conceptualizations of the notions «Spain for Europe» or «Europe for Spain» for Spain came at the end of the nineteenth – in the beginning of the twentieth century after the defeat in the war of 1898, for Ukraine it became relevant as a result of the realization of the European choice of Ukraine, since both counties were thinking at different times how to find their place in Europe and determine what they can bring to the circle of European peoples. The self-conceptualization of Spain as a member of the European family began after the defeat in the war of 1898, when Spain lost its last colonies: Cuba and the Philippines. The defeat in this war has made appear a galaxy of thinkers who have taken up the revival of Spain’s spirit, one can say of its self-esteem, power and might by explaining its place in Europe. Generation 98 has become the foundation not only for later thinkers and scholars but also for politicians. We can find their ideas in the Eurocentric discourse of F. Franco and in the speeches of his ministers. M. de Unamuno became the most famous and respected figure of this generation, and his thesis on the interpenetration of cultures as a basis for their coexistence, on the mutual development and usefulness of cultures, is a vivid realization of the symbiosis of both concepts. Therefore, the two concepts mentioned in the title can be realized in parallel and do not exclude each other.

Consequently, the concepts of «Spain for Europe» and «Europe for Spain» are originated by the Spanish thinkers and intellectuals of the generation 98. In their discourse, it is difficult to single out the dominant concept, but the most important, in our view, is the intellectual achievement of M. de Unamuno, who successfully combines the two concepts, emphasizing that «Europeanization of Spain» must occur simultaneously with the «Spanishization of Europe» because both sides have something to offer each other, especially in the spiritual scope.

Keywords: Spain, Europe, «generation 98», M. de Unamuno, Spanishization, Europeanization.

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