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The 5th World Congress will include testimonies of Basque emigration through books and documentaries


"Basques in the West" one of the documentaries to be shown at the Kursaal during the Congress
"Basques in the West" one of the documentaries to be shown at the Kursaal during the Congress


The 5th World Congress of Basque Collectivities will begin this Wednesday at the Kursaal in Donostia and will offer the general public the possibility to learn more about the Basque Diaspora through various book presentations about prominent individuals such as Simon Bolivar, or “Mr. Basque,” anthropologist William Douglass, the experiences of children exiled to England during the Spanish Civil War, or the Basque footprint in Antioquia, Colombia to name a few. Also during sessions dedicated to students, also open to the public, there will be screenings of documentaries like “Basques in the West,” or “Artzainak;” an open invitation to get to know the thousands of Basques that live in the “eighth” Basque province better.

Donostia-San Sebastian.  The 5th World Congress of Basque Collectivities will begin this Wednesday in Donostia and will unit nearly 100 delegates and representatives of Basque centers worldwide, those who can tell the story of Basque emigration which is very much alive and currently reclaiming its place again in the homeland.  Including experts and other participants the number participating in this congress reaches nearly 150, and it almost reaches 1,000 if the number of scholars visiting the Kursaal during these days is also counted.  The Congress will offer the opportunity to deepen some stories and testimonies of the Basques from the Diaspora through presentations of books and a series of documentaries. 

Among the books, Mr Basque will be presented by Miel Anjel Elustondo.  The book is a biography of anthropologist and euskaltzale William Douglass, one of the founders of the Center for Basque Studies at the University of Nevada in Reno (one of the most important centers for Basque Studies in the world outside of the Basque Country.  Its author is a specialist in the Basque Diaspora of the US.

From Colombia to England

On Thursday there will be four presentations.  First, John Alejandro Ricaurte, will familiarize the public with the Basques influence in Columbia with his work, Vasco-navarros en Antioquia (1890 a 1970) (Basque-Navarrans in Antioquia (1890 to 1970).  Afterwards the Basque-Argentinean Fabio Javier Echarri will present a biography dedicated to one of the most relevant members of the Basque community El Chaco: Eusebio Zamacola Abrisketa: un basauritarra en el Chaco argentino (El Chaco: Eusebio Zamacola Abrisketa: a man from Basauri in the Argentinean Chaco).  Following, Jose Manuel Azcona will talk about his book entitled El ámbito historiográfico y metodológico de la emigración vasca y navarra hacia América (The historical and methodological level of Basque and Navarrese emigration to America) and finally, Igor Calzada will present the book "¿Hacia una ciudad vasca?" (Towards a Basque City?).

On Friday book presentations will begin with Susana Sabin-Fernandez, who published a book about the experience of children exiled to England during the Spanish Civil War.  The book is titled The 'Niños Vascos': Memory and memorialisation of the Basque refugee children of the Spanish Civil War in the UK . Next Alejandro Cardozo will present an historic profile of the liberator entitled, Simón Bolivar y Bilbao. El hombre antes del héroe, (Simon Bolivar and Bilbao. The man before the heroe).  Following, the historian José Ruiz de Gordejuela will speak about his work Vivir y morir en México (Live and Die in Mexico) and in conclusion Miguel Ángel Elkorobe will share information on the book Domingo de Irala y su entorno en la villa de Bergara (Domingo de Irala and his surroundings in Bergara).  Book presentations will begin at 17:00 and will end at 19:00.

-Complete program, here

Lectures and documentaries

On the other hand regarding documentaries and conferences dedicated to students, which are open to the public, everything will be divided into two blocks.  Each block will be attended by approximately 50 scholars, which leaves an additional 50 spots for audience members.

On day one the first Block will include: at 10:30 Marcelino Irianni who will talk about Basque Emigration to Argentina and Cesar Arrondo who will talk about the Basque associations in Argentina.  The documentary “Zuretzako” will then be shown by American Javi Zubizarreta.  At the same time in Block 2 the documentary “Basques in the West” will be shown by Amaya Oxarango-Ingram and “Artzainak” by Javier Zubizarreta.  Axun Garikano, will then lecture on her book Far Westeko Euskal Herria.

On Thursday on Block 1 Koldo San Sebastián will talk about The Bengoecheas of Mountain Home, Idaho and Patty Miller, director of the Basque Museum of Boise will explain the work of that institution to the students.  Next, “Basques in the West,” by Amaya Oxarango-Ingram and “Artzainak,” by Javier Zubizarreta will be shown.  In Block 2 the session will begin by showing “Zuretzako” by Javier Zubizarreta followed by a talk by Argitxu Camus on Basque in the Diaspora. 

On Friday, Block 1 will begin with a talk by Basque-American John Bieter entitled, “Basque emigration to the United States,” followed by “Basque Culture in the US,” by John Ysursa.  This will be followed by “Zuretzako.”  In Block 2 “Basques in the West,” and “Artzainak” will be shown followed by a talk by historian Oscar Alvarez Gila on migratory waves and their causes. 

-Complete Program, here 

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