changing_views_of_the_contribution.

May 19th, 2015
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Changing Views of the Contribution of Popular Spanish Resistance to Victory inthe Peninsular WarChanging views of the contribution of popular Spanish resistance to victory in the PeninsularWar.The guerrillas have been viewed in a variety of different ways in the historiographical record ofthe Peninsular War. Until relatively recently, according to Tone, historians have paid them scantattention putting the focus on, according to Esdaile great men, great armies and great battles.This essay will explore some aspects of the guerrillas that have been the subject of debate in thehistoriography, focussing first on exploring who the guerrillas were and what their impact wason the war.Tone, in a study of the English language historiography and that of France and Spain identifiedthat there was a difference in the way each treated the guerrillas. He summarised that while theBritish ignored the guerrillas role, the French overplayed the role of the church and the Spanishtended to portray the popular resistance as comprising the whole of the population. It could beargued that this reduction of three historiographic traditions to just three simple ideas is anoversimplification, but there is some justification for at least one of these ideas. To illustrate, andexplain the British view, Tone cites Napiers 1882 history of the Peninsular War as discussingthe guerrillas, or partidas (the name given to guerrilla bands by the Spanish themselves) in lessthan glo

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