It is useless to study the past if it does not help us to understand the present. In the case of Spain, a country of diverse peoples and nationalities, of varied cultures and languages, a look at its history facilitates the understanding of its complex current reality. The fundamental objective of this book is to explain why Spain is the way it is.
The different aspects of Spanish culture —economy, politics, art, thought, literature, etc.— are exposed integrated in an organic set of interdependent parts, not as watertight compartments, as this is alien to reality.
In order to facilitate reading comprehension, technicalities, syntactic complications, long paragraphs, references to other publications, excessive quotations and cumbersome lists of names have been avoided as far as possible. Numerous texts of authors of opposing ideologies and positions have been included in order to illustrate the theoretical explanations so that the reader can draw his own conclusions.
SEBASTIÁN QUESADA MARCO es licenciado en Historia por la Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Desde 1965 ha trabajado al servicio de la promoción y extensión de la lengua y cultura española en el extranjero, primero en calidad de Director de Centros Culturales Españoles dependientes de la Dirección General de Relaciones Culturales y Científicas del Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y, posteriormente, como Director de Institutos Cervantes.
He has directed the Hispano-Arab Institute of Culture of Baghdad and the Cervantes Institutes of Tangier, Lisbon, Milan, Bordeaux and Athens. He has been Coordinator of the Cervantes Institutes in Europe and, within these functions, has been in charge of the management of the Cervantes Institutes of Cairo, Vienna, Milan and Bucharest. He prepared the transformation of the Cervantes Institutes cultural centers of Cairo, Tangier, Tetouan, Lisbon, Vienna, Milan, Bordeaux and Bucharest.
He has been a member of the DELE Advisory Council (Diplomas of Spanish as a Foreign Language) of the Ministry of Education and Science, and the president of numerous DELE courts in various countries (USA, Brazil, Denmark, France, Italy, Greece, Portugal, Morocco, Bulgaria, Egypt, Romania, Austria).