Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Noise on the beach
Someone is listening to the twentieth century in this tabac on the beach at Argelès-sur-Mer. Which is understandable as twentieth century culture ebbed and flowed in this part of Catalonia - peace activist, Trappist monk and advocate of inter-religious dialogue Thomas Merton was born in Prades, and that town’s most famous resident Pau Casals worked to relieve the hardship of Spanish Republican refugees in the notorious Argelès internment camp shortly before Alma Mahler passed through as she fled from the Nazis, while the life journey of the less fortunate Walter Benjamin ended here. Many have paid homage to Catalonia, and the ebb and flow continues in the new millennium as the region’s independence movement gathers momentum.
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