The Spanish Peace Movement in a European Context

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The sharp decline of the Spanish peace movement in the latter part of the 1980s paralleled quite closely the decline of similar movements elsewhere in Western Europe, particularly the United Kingdom and Germany. There has been considerable research carried out into the rise of the ‘new social movements’ in Western Europe but little attention has been given to southern Europe, particularly Spain. Also, most of the literature has focused on the period of ascendancy for these movements rather than the era of their decline in the later 1980s. This article seeks to fill that gap by focusing on the decline of the Spanish peace movement within the wider context of the European ‘new social movements’. It explores the common factors in the European‐wide decline while highlighting certain factors that were unique to Spain.