The dictatorship that emerged from the Spanish CivilWar (1936–1939) is justifiably regarded as a repressive, backward-looking regime. General Francisco Franco, who could not have won the civil war against the democratic republic without the direct support of Nazi Germany and fascistItaly, typifies the intellectually and culturally deficient dictator.Nevertheless, this dictatorship did not collapse until his death in 1975. A closer look shows that the Francoist dictatorship recognized early on how it could use urbanism for a wide variety of purposes. This helps to explain why Francoism was able to stay in control for so long. This presentation will focus on two examples of a commonly underestimated chapter of Spanish urbanism: the reconstruction from1938 onwards. My approach stems from a longer study of 20th-century Europeandictatorships with Harald Bodenschatz and other colleagues. In 2021, wepublished a book on this topic: Städtebau als Kreuzzug Francos. Wiederaufbau und Erneuerung unter der Diktatur in Spanien 1938–1959, edited by Max Welch Guerra and Harald Bodenschatz (Berlin 2021).
Max Welch Guerra, born in Chile in 1956, came to the Federal Republic of Germany in search of political asylum in 1974. After studying political science at the FreeUniversity of Berlin, he earned his doctorate in 1991 and his post-doctoral degree (habilitation) in 1999, both at the Department of Social and PlanningSciences at the Technical University of Berlin. Since 2003 he has been a professor of spatial planning and spatial research at the Bauhaus UniversityWeimar, where he has been a senior professor since 2022. He heads the B.Sc. andM.Sc. Urban Studies programmes there. Until 2021 he was director (co-director with Prof. Ines Weizman from 2015 to 2020) of the Bauhaus Institute for the History and Theory of Architecture and Planning. His many publications include such edited works as European Planning History in the 20th Century: A Continent of Urban Planning, ed. Max Welch Guerra et. al. (New York/London: Routledge, 2022); The Power of Past Greatness: Urban Renewal of HistoricCentres in European City Centres, co-edited with Harald Bodenschatz(Berlin: DOM Publishers, 2021); 100+ Neue Perspektiven in derBauhaus-Rezeption, co-edited with Ines Weizman et. al. (Berlin: Jovis, 2021); and Städtebau als Kreuzzug Francos. Wiederaufbau und Erneuerung unter der Diktatur in Spanien 1938–1959, co-edited (Berlin:DOM Publishers, 2021).