After thirty-nine years in exile -twenty four in Argentina and almost fifteen in Italy- RAFAEL ALBERTI returned to Spain for the first time on 27th April, 1977. When he left the plane his first words were: “I left Spain with a clenched fist, and I now return with an open hand, a gesture of peace and harmnoy between all Spaniards”.
For nearly a century, his remarkable life has been bound up with the most significant cultural, political and social events in Spain. His affiliation with the Communist Party, his work in the “Alliance of Antifascist Intellectuals” during the Civil War, his collaboration with María Teresa León and other intellectuals during this war, saveguarding important spanish art treasures, such as The Maids of Honour by Velázquez, Emperor Charles V by Titian..., his honorary presidency together with Dolores Ibárruri in the first Democratic Parliament..., all this makes him an important figure of the recent spanish history.
Rafael Alberti has filled with his verses the most important pages of the contemporaneous poetry. He belonged to the mythical “Generation of ´27”, the group with the greatest poetic splendour in the twentieth century. He has lived this century with exemplary morality and ethics, which has been recognized with innumerous prizes such as the Spanish National Prize in Literature, the International Lenin Peace Prize, the Spanish National Prize in Theatre and the Cervantes Prize in Literature.