Places Discussed

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Last Updated on May 5, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 186


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*Andalusia. Vast region of southern Spain that Lorca knew best and uses as the setting for many of his works. Inhabited by Moors from Northern Africa for nearly eight hundred years, it retains their cultural influences in many areas, especially in architecture, vocabulary, place names, poetry, and music. Some Moorish descendants also still remain, as do the Spanish gypsies, whose cultures combined to produce flamenco songs, music and dance.


Homes. Locations of many scenes, using minimal stage settings and direction, limited scenery. Rooms are painted yellow or pink or white and are decorated with flowers and simple furnishings.


Cave. Dwelling in which the bride lives. Caves were often used as dwellings in mountainous parts of southern Spain, notably by Gypsy families. The interior of the bride’s cave is comfortably and tastefully decorated. However, its exterior is “as hard as a landscape” on ceramic decorated with white, gray, blue and silver colors.

White house

White house. Building with arches and white stairs, walls, and floors that resemble those of a church. Neighbors meet here to discuss the ill-fated wedding and its deadly aftermath.

Historical Context

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Last Updated on June 1, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 484

A Nation Divided
Spain entered the twentieth century as a constitutional monarchy. The Spanish populace, however, had little faith in this regime as the country was hampered by persistent and grave economic instability. Clearly, a change in the political and economic order of things was necessary. Widely opposed forces vied for contention. In various parts of the country where industrialization had taken place, workers were determined to ensure their proper treatment and compensation and to enhance their social status. These groups were eager to see a left-wing, socialist government take the reins of Spain. These groups were forward-looking in cultural terms. A society still imbued with classist notions, for example, was not a society able to accommodate a new working and middle class made up of former peasants who would no longer tolerate the old class hierarchy. This old hierarchy heavily favored the aristocracy and educated classes. These new social groups were also staunchly antimonarchical, and they were also secular in view. To the opposing groups of Spaniards, these forces of change represented a drastic and fearful break from centuries of tradition, whether in social, cultural, or political terms. These other groups wished to maintain a traditional class structure, the succession of kings and queens, and the Catholic Church as a centrally shaping social and educational force. Lorca was on the side of change. His relations with the left-wing government voted into power in 1931 were cordial. Its Minister of Education, Fernando de los Ríos, funded the theater project of which Lorca was artistic director (the project was called La barraca).

The Democratic Republic versus The Dictatorship
The political scene in Spain was highly changeable during the late 1920s and early 1930s. A left-wing government, elected in 1931, was voted in again in 1936 after a brief return to a right-wing government in between. But Spain seemed determined to change, to try to negotiate the difficulties of modifying political and cultural institutions shaped for centuries by attitudes and beliefs no longer viable. This effort was effectively halted, however, as one of the leaders of Spain's traditionalist factions staged a coup d' état, or overthrow of the government, in 1936. This army general, Francisco Franco, was funded by fellow European nationalist and fascist leaders Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini. A bloody three-year civil war ensued, with the forces of Franco finally winning. As Lorca was clearly...

(The entire section contains 2101 words.)

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