Another sentimental tango from from Tio de la Tiza and the Bebabouched Moors demonstrates a firmly-rooted belief in 1891 Cadiz in the Decadence of the Nation, even before the disaster of 1898 and its long aftermath exacerbated the gulf between a diligently managed press and wild popular fears:
Una inocente niña llorando estaba
y con acento triste
de esta manera se lamentaba.
Cuando querrá cansarse
mi negra suerte
para vivir así
prefiero la muerte.
Hace ya tiempo
que sin quejarme vengo sufriendo
el hambre me ahoga,
yo me estoy muriendo.
no tratan más que de aniquilarme
todos me desprecian,
y quieren robarme.
Un anciano venerable
que conmigo la escuchaba
con sentimiento decía
mientras la niña lloraba.
Sabe usted lo que estoy pensando,
que esa niña de mis entrañas
se parece si no me engaño
a una nación que se llama España.
Many Americans had taken this for granted since in the words of George C Furber (The twelve months volunteer; or, journal of a private, in the Tennessee regiment of cavalry, in the campaign, in Mexico, 1846-7)
Another flag unrolled its folds from the lofty turrets, and the North American descendants of the English, banished the enervated descendants of the Spanish race, and trod in triumph the “Halls of the Montezumas.”
HG Wells wrote around the same time:
No generalisations about race are too extravagant for the inflamed credulity of the present time. No attempt is ever made to distinguish differences in inherent quality–the true racial differences–from artificial differences due to culture. No lesson seems ever to be drawn from history of the fluctuating incidence of the civilising process first upon this race and then upon that. The politically ascendant peoples of the present phase are understood to be the superior races, including such types as the Sussex farm labourer, the Bowery tough, the London hooligan, and the Paris apache; the races not at present prospering politically, such as the Egyptians, the Greeks, the Spanish, the Moors, the Chinese, the Hindoos, the Peruvians, and all uncivilised people are represented as the inferior races, unfit to associate with the former on terms of equality, unfit to intermarry with them on any terms, unfit for any decisive voice in human affairs. (A new Utopia, 1905)
Unfortunately Kipling sang louder, and those who did hear Wells tended to misinterpret or misuse him.
Les Apaches have been somewhat forgotten. Is La maison Philibert the novel? It’s certainly filthy enough, but les Triplettes de [Apache den] Belleville already occupy a different world. C has my copy of Amor se escribe sin hache, but I believe Jardiel Poncela had both the American and the Parisian Apaches die of alcohol and ridicule. Manuel López Cañamaque wrote carnival material for Los Apaches Parisienses, but that’s all I know.
- Within the rose
After the Friday night show I was talking to several empresarial gents about taking something along similar lines into districts and
- Errar es umano
Herrar es de Vulcano & colegas.
- Capnolagnia and liberty in Russia
I don’t think author and diplomat Juan Valera (“Good should always be in fashion”) will mind me revealing his smoking fetish,
- La nostalgia que sentimos por la nostalgia que sentían por el organillo
Joan Perucho, Juan Antonio Bardem, y un par más.
- The 1903 Paris-Madrid race that got away
A remarkable feat of memory from Arturo Barea’s autobiography.