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Welcome to the autumn 2019 edition of the Bulletin, following the first-ever summer when more candidates sat an A level in Spanish than in French.

Some may wonder why increasing numbers of students are drawn to the language of sol y playa, paella, flamenco, Almodóvar, Penelope Cruz, García Márquez, Borges, Lorca, Picasso, Kahlo, tango, salsa, Despacito, etc.

We do not…

The eclectic charms of Spanish-language culture are brought together in the new (2022) syllabus for Pre-U Topics and Texts, introduced in this edition.  To complement this look forward, Sander Berg reflects back on ten years of teaching Paper 4 Topics.

Our eclectic theme is further reflected in contributions ranging from Neruda’s political  poems to the racy stories of María de Zayas.  We also assess the dynamic relationship between football and cinema in the Spanish-speaking world and the place of Dolor y gloria in Almodóvar’s repertoire.

On the linguistic front, we offer a new perspective on the familiar layman’s question ‘is there much difference between the Spanish of Spain and what they speak in Latin America?’.

While the study of Spanish flourishes in the UK, parts of the Spanish-speaking world seem trapped in cyclical mode.  The crispación on the streets of Barcelona this October was sadly similar to that of October 2017.  It makes for a sorry backdrop to the second general election in Spain this year, prompting us to assess whether there is no word for compromise in Spanish.  We also catch up on developments in Spanish America since our June edition, and celebrate Franco’s exhumation with a look at the role of women in the Spanish Civil War

Closer to home, we are grateful for the appreciative response to our reader survey in September.  We also welcome Alfredo Benito and Dr Nathanial Gardner to the editorial board, adding considerable journalistic and academic clout to our offering.

The Bulletin brings together the enthusiasm and expertise of writers at all levels of familiarity with the Spanish-speaking world.  We will be welcoming contributions to our next edition by the end of January please.  New readers are welcome to join our mailing list by using the contact tab above.

Entre tanto, les deseamos a nuestros lectores estudios fructíferos y felices fiestas.

The BAS editorial team