Enterrar a los muertos

To Bury The Dead | Seix Barral, 2005

» Dulce Chacón Prize 2006

» International Rodofo Walsh Prize

Enterrar a los muertos is a fascinating quest for the truth that led the author to shed new light on the case.

José Robles Pazos and John Dos Passos met in the winter of 1916 in Spain, and their friendship grew steadily stronger until Robles’ death in 1937. Professor at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore and translator of Manhattan Transfer, Robles and his family were on holidays in Spain in July 1936, when the Civil War broke out.

Dos Passos arrived in Valencia in April 1937 to work with Hemingway on the script for the propaganda film The Spanish Earth. He soon got to know Robles had been charged with espionage and high treason and most probably executed by his own comrades. Dos Passos’ intention to denounce the incipient Communist repression on the Republican side brought him into conflict with Hemingway. Their long and close friendship ended and the disagreement dragged on in the acrimonious debate that would be reflected in later novels by both writers. The murder of José Robles became a cause célèbre at the time, and has been referred to, often erroneously, by many leading Civil War historians.