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Professor Oscar Alvarez talks at the Boise Basque Museum about the history of the Basque flag


Oscar Alvarez at the Basque Museum in Boise, Idaho
Oscar Alvarez at the Basque Museum in Boise, Idaho


Oscar Alvarez Gila, History professor at the University of the Basque Country, was in Boise, Idaho last Tuesday to talk about the history of the Basque flag, known as the "Ikurrina." He is currently a visiting scholar at the Center for Basque Studies in Reno. The presentation was entitled “Before the Ikurrina was the Basque Flag. Icons of Basque Identity in the Americas (1880-1935)” and it took place at Boise's Basque Museum. The museum hosted the presentation, which was open to the public and free of charge.

Boise, USA. The Basque Museum in Boise, Idaho, hosted a presentation last Tuesday on the history of the Basque flag. Oscar Alvarez Gila’s presentation followed last month’s talk by BSU History professor John Bieter on Basque migration. Professor Alvarez has done extensive research on Basque identity, and on how people define themselves as Basques. During his presentation, he talked about the different attempts in both the Basque Country and Basque communities in the Americas to create and use various models of iconic representations of Basque identity.

The Ikurrina was not the Basque Country’s first flag, he explained. In 1881, Pedro Soraluce designed one, which was welcomed with open arms by the Diaspora in America, but not so much by the Basque Country. Today’s Ikurrina was created by Sabino Arana but closely resembles Soraluce’s original flag.

Upcoming presentation

-5/24/2011: La Pelota Vasca

Educational Presentation – view the 2003 film, La Pelota Vasca - documenting the views of people of various ideologies and points of view in the Basque Country. This will be followed by a discussion that will focus on the prospect for a new dialogue on the future of the Basque Country today.


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