Socialising Memory and History

2006 November

In November 2006, the association ACMe launched a multimedia portal about the history and memory of Les Corts prison for women, with the support of the Memorial Democràtic de la Generalitat de Catalunya (Institution of the Catalan Government promoting the Memory of Democracy):

The spirit behind this initiative was to create a virtual “Site of Memory” based upon oral, written, and visual sources, on the site where the prison once stood, occupied now for the most part by the building of a department store.

ACMe took over the initiative, advocated for years by the anarchist militant Enriqueta Borrás Mateu, daughter of the CNT member Rosita Mateu, (and whose account would later feature in the website’s testimonies’ section), of installing a plaque in memory of the prisoners -and their sons and daughters- that had once lived in the prison.


The following year ACMe produced Silenci.39.1, a piece of theatre by the company Microtroupe, and began a series of joined efforts with HistoraulaAssociació de Professorat d'Història Oral en el Aula de Catalunya (Association of Oral History Teachers - School of Catalonia) that resulted in an educational suitcase consisting of various teaching units for students of E.S.O (compulsory stage of Secondary Education) and Bachillerato (post-16 stage), that were downloadable via their website.

With a lecture format, followed by a theatre play, with the support of Memorial Democràtic de la Generalitat de Catalunya (Democratic Memorial of the Government of Catalonia), the piece was performed in 2008 in the secondary schools Joan d'Àustria, in Barcelona (17.11.2008); Bernat el Ferrer, in Molins de Rei (12.12.08), and the Escola Intermunicipal in Sant Sadurní d'Anoia (16.12.08), in front of ESO and Bachillerato students.


In 2012, this time thanks to funds granted by the Ministry of the Presidency, Silenci 39.1 was shown in the secondary schools Mediterrània in Castelldefels (16.3.2012) Joan Maragall in Barcelona (3.4.2012); Escola Intermunicipal de Sant Sadurní d'Anoia (7.5.2012) and Montserrat in Barcelona (15.6.2012), at all times with the continuous support of the teachers of the group Historaula.


In 2008 ACMe produced the documentary Memòria de Les Corts, (Memory of Les Corts) by Marc Almodóvar and Ramon Bochaca, featuring former inmates Soledad Real and Maria Salvo, and took part in the shooting of the documentary De Monstruos y faldas (On Monsters and skirts) by the filmmaker Carolina Astudillo.  

LABOCA, a music band from Madrid, created  several hip hop songs inspired by recorded accounts taken from women confined in the Francoist prisons of Ventas and Les Corts, as well as by popular music from those years


LABOCA dedicated 2 songs to Les Corts prison. For the first one  they drew inspiration from the testimony of the communist members Maria Salvo and Soledad Real, chronicling life in the prison during the 1940’s. For the second they used the testimony given by the anarchist militant Joaquina Dorado, who lived in Les Corts at a later date, from 1948 to 1953.

For each of those tunes, LABOCA worked with chords from songs of both periods: the ‘copla’ Tatuaje (Manuel Quiroga and Rafael de León, 1941) and the ‘pasodoble’ Ay mi sombrero!  (Ramón Perelló and Genaro Monreal, 1948).