Remembering JB Trend: the quiet internationalist

22 April 2013 - 23 April 2013

Clare College, Cambridge


Alison Sinclair (Department of Spanish and Portuguese / Clare College)

Karen Arrandale (Clare Hall)


Conference summary

Intellectual activity should be guided by the supreme art of life, that of doing good to other people rather than being great oneself; and the source of this art must be looked for in those feelings and impulses which give elevation to a man’s character, make him wise and good, and kindle in him a love for everything that is fine and true.
JB Trend A Picture of Modern Spain (1921)

This symposium, the first event of which is the annual MacColl lecture of the department, celebrates the life and work of J B Trend, the first Professor of Spanish in Cambridge, and a central figure in the history of Hispanism. Trend was an unusual figure: he was shy, but a clear enthusiast, and memorably gifted in inspiring enthusiasm  in others; his first degree was in Natural Sciences; his studies of modern Spanish culture and intellectual life in the early 1920s are still a fundamental point of reference; he moved into musicology in an unofficial manner while still a student, later becoming a prime figure in Spanish musicology helping to bring it into a wider international arena;  he was central to the development of a tradition in British Hispanism that was wide-ranging in its interests, and driven by similarly wide-ranging curiosity. There were important consequences of what he did and how he did it. Trend frequented Spain assiduously between his first degree and his appointment to the Chair. His contacts there memorably included the Residencia de Estudiantes in Madrid, in some ways an institution that could be considered as a version of CRASSH, crossed with a University college or hall of residence (Trend referred to it as ‘Oxford and Cambridge in Madrid’). The cultural openness of the Residencia is mirrored by the cultural openness of Cambridge in these years. Trend’s contacts contributed to a strong tradition of the reception of contemporary poets in Cambridge (Salinas, Cernuda, Dámaso Alonso, Muñoz Rojas among others), and other prime figures such as Unamuno. The coming of the Civil War made Trend quietly significant in the reception of fleeing intellectuals.   The symposium will include papers on the varied activities and aspects of Trend, and two concerts. 



Supported by the Centre for Research in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (CRASSH) and the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Cambridge and the Residencia de Estudiantes.

Accommodation for non-paper giving delegates

We are unable to arrange accommodation, however, the following websites may be of help.

Visit Cambridge
Cambridge Rooms

University of Cambridge accommodation webpage

NB. CRASSH is not able to help with the booking of accommodation.


Administrative assistance:


Location : The Latimer Room, Clare College

Date : 22-23 April 2013

22 April 2013



MacColl Lecturer: Dame Margaret Anstee

John Brande Trend: The Life of a Scholar Gypsy


23 April 2013


9.00 - 9.30


9.30 - 10.15


  • Alison Sinclair (University of Cambridge): Trend and the development of Spanish in Cambridge
  • Almudena de la Cueva (Residencia de Estudiantes, Madrid): La Institución Libre de Enseñanza en Cambridge: la España de Giner, Cossío y Jiménez Fraud, según Trend

10.15 - 10.45

 Trend and Madrid

  • Álvaro Ribagorda (Universidad Carlos III in Madrid): Trend and the Residencia de Estudiantes, or Oxford and Cambridge in Madrid



11.15 - 11.45

 Trend and Madrid (continued)

  • James Valender (Colegio de México): Trend and Jiménez Fraud in England

11.45 - 12.30

  Trend and Music

  • Juan José Carreras (University of Zaragoza): The music of Spanish History to 1600 and New Trends, or Pandora’s boxes: MSS holdings in the Cambridge University Library

12.30 - 13.15


13.30 - 14.15

 Informal Concert by members of Clare Choir of vocal music edited by Trend

  Clare Chapel

14.30 - 16.00

 Trend and Music (continued)

  • Tess Knighton (ICREA Research Professor, Institucio Mila i Fontanals (CSIC), Barcelona): Trend, Falla and the revival of early music in Spain and the UK in the 1920s
  • Karen Arrandale (King’s College Archive, Cambridge): Absent Friends: the Correspondence of Edward Dent and JB Trend
  • Samuel Llano (Wrongdoing project, University of Cambridge): Trend and Roberto Gerhard

16.00 - 16.30


16.30 - 17.00

 Trend's Legacy

  • Robin Chapman (novelist): Trend, theatrical theory and practice: an inspiration for others

17.00 - 17.30

 Round Table Chair: Trevor Dadson (Queen Mary)

 With all the above speakers