Was Gerda Taro murdered?


Was Gerda Taro murdered by Stalinists? This article in the New Statesman by Robin Stummer, based on an interview with Willie Brandt,  thinks so.

Gerda Taro was a fearless, pioneering chronicler of the Spanish Civil War. Robin Stummer uncovers evidence to suggest that her unflinching pictures led to her murder. Read


In an interview with the Spanish daily El País, a nephew of a Republican soldier at the Battle of Brunete explained that she had died in an accident. According to the eye-witness account, she had been run over by a reversing tank and she died from her wounds in El Goloso English hospital a few hours later. Wikipedia

Books about Gerda Taro

Gerda Taro
(photography guide)

Gerda Taro (19101937) was the first woman photojournalist to photograph in the heat of battle. Taro was the lover and photographic partner of famed photojournalist Robert Capa and, as his manager, is often credited for launching Capas career. She and Capa covered much of the Spanish Civil War side by side. Taro was killed in July 1937, while photographing a crucial battle near Madrid. ICP holds what is by far the worlds largest collection of Taros work, including approximately 200 prints as well as original negatives. Organized chronologically, this exhibition will include vintage and modern prints, and magazine layouts using Taros work. The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue, the first major collection of Taros work ever published.

Out of the Shadows: A Life of Gerda Taro (biography, I really want to read this soon)

“Gerda Taro was a fearless, pioneering chronicler of the Spanish Civil War… Taro was the first female war photographer. She created some of the most moving studies ever made of people in conflict.” –‘New Statesman’

The trial of Andrés Nin

Time Magazine from 1937

In Barcelona last week opened a political trial so engrossing that even a major air raid, even, the shattering concussion of bombs which exploded a few hundred yards from the courtroom did not distract the judges, prisoners or spectators. In an atmosphere electric with hate and Spanish passion, Andrés Nin was at last put on trial in absentia. Andrés Nin’s small, blonde Russian wife or widow had a ringside spectator’s seat. Read more:

Gerda Taro video

An interesting talk here about the life of Gerda Taro, the pioneering and largely unknown female photojournalist whose work consisted almost exclusively of dramatic photographs from the Spanish Civil War.The talk is given by Irme Schaber, Taro’s biographer.


Taro was companion and professional partner of photographer Robert Capa.

More on Wikipedia

When the Spanish Civil War broke out (1936), Gerda Taro travelled to Barcelona, Spain, to cover the events with Capa. Taro acquired the nickname of la pequeña rubia (“the little blonde”). They covered the war together at northeastern Aragon and at the southern Cordoba. Always together under the common, bogus signature of Robert Capa, they were successful through many important publications (the Swiss Züricher Illustrierte, the French Vu). Their early war photos are distinguishable since Taro used a Rollei camera which rendered squared photographs while Capa produced rectangular Leica pictures. However, for some time in 1937 they produced similar 135 film pictures together under the label of Capa&Taro.

Subsequently, Taro attained some independence. She refused Capa’s marriage proposal. Also, she became publicly related to the circle of anti fascist European intellectuals (Ernest Hemingway, George Orwell) who crusaded particularly for the Spanish Republic. The Ce Soir, a leftist newspaper of France, signed her for publishing Taro’s works only. Then, she began to commercialize her production under the Photo Taro label. Regards, Life, Illustrated London News and Volks-Illustrierte were amongst those publications.[1][2]

Reporting the Valencia bombing alone, Gerda Taro attained the photographs which are her most celebrated. Also, in July 1937, Taro’s photographs were in demand by the international press when, alone, she was covering the Brunete region near Madrid for Ce Soir. Although the Nationalist propaganda claimed that the region was under its control, the Republican forces had in fact forced that faction out. Taro’s camera was the only testimony of the actual situation

Read More

Films about the Spanish Civil War

Cinergia has this excellent selection of information on films about the  Spanish Civil War for teachers, scholars and cinephiles. Most of the films listed are feature films, but some documentaries are included. More here

In the image Andrés Pájares salutes out of fear in Ay Carmela by Carlos Saura

The site also has comprehensive notes in English and Spanish on using some of these films for teaching. Here

Interview with Paul Preston

Audio interview with Paul Preston here on Canal  Ser in Spanish about his book We Saw Spain Die about foreign journalists in the Spanish Civil War.

From review of We Saw Spain Die

In the minds of these correspondents, the quest for truth was not compromised but enhanced by commitment. This testament to their testimony could not have been supplied by a more erudite expert. Preston is a peerless historian of Spain, and the only one who writes as readably as a professional journalist.