Catalan Review

’PARLO…’: A CATALAN VOICE FROM THE HOLOCAUST: WRITER AND SURVIVOR OF MAUTHAUSEN JOAQUIM AMAT-PINIELLA SHATTERS FRANCOIST MANDATED SILENCE

Catalan Review (2007), 21, (1), 69–87.

Abstract

Following the retreat to France of half a million Spaniards in the winter of ’38/39 and as a result of the Nazi occupation, 10,000-15,000 Spaniards were deported to concentration camps. Among them was the writer Joaquim Amat-Piniella (1913-1974). His novel K.L. Reich, whose title alludes to the stamp impressed on all objects within the Nazi Reich’s concentration camps, creates a fictional world that reflects the realities within Mauthausen. That author writes in a draft (without date), that with this story his wish was not to focus on the horrors, but rather to document (“manar un record”), and to relate the historical catastrophes of “cruelty, misery, suffering, but also hope.” His poetic work Les llunyanies (The Far Away Lands) also reveals what Amat denoted as his “white hour,” an awakening of conscience and consciousness, the insistence on what is human and humane precisely because he was able to endure four and a half years of brutality. In addition to his novel and poetry, Amat-Piniella’s political efforts following his liberation promoted the reconciliarion that resulted from a sense of justice. With his poetry, this native of Manresa expressed the gamut of his affective responses to Mauthausen. With K.L. Reich, Amat-Piniella gives voice to the Republicans whose exile led to a concentrationary sentence. With his activism, he did everything possible to vindicate the ex-prisoners and obtain for them their due “indemnización” (compensatory damages) and thus overcome the obstacles imposed by the repressive forces. In spite of numerous hurdles, Amat was triumphant.

Access Token
£25.00
READ THIS ARTICLE
If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here
If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Details

Author details

Stanley, Maureen Tobin