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Felicia Browne was a member of the British Communist party that was in Spain for the International Peoples Olympiad when the Spanish Civil War began. Instead of evacuating with others she stayed and embarked on a mission to join a malitia to fight against fascism. These are just some of the many items she left behind that show.
The first item was a collage maybe intended to be used as a poster. It features a skull and a theater mask in front of Italy. The mask of joy falling from the empty skull representing what life under fascism is like. Fascism would try and give off a reputation that it is something giving a country joy when in reality it is a terrifying dictatorship. This shows Felicia's feeling about Fascism in places other than just her own country.
Felicia also made a book jacket as an art project about Anatole France's "The Revolt of the Angels." This work by Anatole France is about the angels becoming educated enough to want to overthrow God. It was published in 1914 it could have held great meaning for her due to her commitment to the Communist Party. She would have been able to look at a book like this and seen the ideals of her communist manifesto especially the thoughts on how religion is a sign of an oppressed people. This shows the political environment and ideals influenced and sprung her into action in Spain.
Because of Felicia's artistic background she often drew what she saw around her in Spain. This drawing would have come from the beginning of her time in Spain. In it you can see some of the people she would have seen there. It depicts the expressions and uniforms of the malitia men. Some are wearing berets or flat caps and one is wearing a helmet.
The four people in this photograph, including Felicia Browne are standing in front of a vehicle that has the words 'Ayuda Medical de los Artistas de Inglaterra a las Fuerzas Internacionales Madrid' [Medical aid from the artists of England for the International Forces] place on the side. It was most likely bought with money raised by British artists in 1936. Although the country of Britain would not intervene in the Spainish Civil War, it's citizens were not afraid to donate supplies and help in anyway they could.
This was a letter written by Felicia while she was in Spain. In this letter she has finally found a militia that would let her join and now performs guard duties. Despite the difficulty of a language barrier and shortages of uniforms she still tries to perform her duties. She also mentions three Jewish men that cycled all the way from England to join the militia. This is significant due to the fact that the fascists in Spain were strong Catholics and trying to institutionalize the religion in the government.
Felicia Browne would tragically die on her first mission in August of 1936. She was shot by fascists while trying to help a fallen comrade. She was the first British volunteer to die in the Spanish Civil war.