The Wall Topics for Further Study
by Jean-Paul Sartre

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Topics for Further Study

(Short Stories for Students)

Look at paintings depicting elements of the Spanish Civil War, such as Pablo Picasso’s Guernica, Joan Miro’s Black and Red series, or Robert Motherwell’s Elegy to the Spanish Republic. What do these works of art say about the Spanish Civil War? Is their message similar or different from the views expressed in ‘‘The Wall’’?

Many noted Spaniards died during the war, including the poets Federico Garcia Lorca and Miguel Hernandez. Read the works of some Spanish writers from the 1930s. How do these writers depict Spain at that time? What were their views on the Spanish Civil War?

Find accounts of the Spanish Civil War in magazines and newspapers from the 1930s. Does Sartre’s portrayal of the war seem accurate? Why or why not?

Investigate Sartre’s philosophy of existentialism. Then use what you have learned to analyze ‘‘The Wall’’ from an existentialist point of view.

Read another fictionalized account of the Spanish Civil War, such as Andre Malraux’s Man’s Hope or Ernest Hemingway’s For Whom the Bell Tolls. Compare that work to ‘‘The Wall.’’