The Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) represented the defining social issue of its time. With fascist regimes already established in Germany, Italy, and Portugal, alongside militarist authoritarian states such as Japan, many millions around the world perceived the fascist danger in Spain and responded to the call. They knew that a fascist Spain, supported by the other fascist nations, would pose a threat to Western democracy in the rest of Europe, including the Soviet Union.
Once war broke out, volunteers streamed in from many lands, representing various political tendencies – Communist, Trotskyist, Socialist, anarchist, syndicalist, Republican – reflecting the different strands of domestic politics within Spain itself. From the United States at least 3,000 passionate young men and women joined with those from other lands in the reverently remembered International Brigade. The American contingent was called the Abraham Lincoln Battalion.
However, in all of the artistic and historical output concerning the Spanish Civil War, mention is scarcely found of the response to it from neighboring Portugal. This is strange since Portugal had been suffering under António Salazar’s fascist regime for almost a decade and was familiar with what lay ahead for the Spanish people – and the world – should the forces of Francisco Franco fascists win. Eulalia’s House fills that gap.