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Charting the Lives of José Barrio & Carmen Ibañez

Using various charting methods to explore José Barrio & Carmen Ibañez's testimonies.

Published onApr 25, 2023
Charting the Lives of José Barrio & Carmen Ibañez

When looking at the testimonies of José Barrio and Carmen Ibañez, knowing how their two stories connect and differ helps foster a better understanding of them. With the various charts and graphs below these stories are visualized in new ways and show the process gone through to help piece together their testimonies and lives as a whole.

The first chart below shows the frequency of words throughout both Barrio and Ibañez’s testimonies without us taking out any of the words such as the interviewer’s last name “Boehm” and the time stamps such as “00” and “05.” Looking at the raw data of word frequency between both testimonies shows an untouched look at the words that show up and shows minor connections between the two testimonies. These minor connections are interesting, however going through and cleaning up the data allows for major connections to be explored.

After going through and scanning the testimonies for important locations, people, and organization, this next chart below is one showing the frequency of those mentioned throughout both Barrio and Ibañez’s testimonies. This chart then shows more major connections established between the two testimonies. In regards to locations, the city of Madrid comes up the most and when looking at people, the brothers in the testimonies come up quite a bit as well.

Next, these connections shown in our second chart lead us to our third chart, showing how these different figures and events overlapped within the two testimonies.

The goal of this data visualization chart is to aid readers and viewers in understanding how people, their lives, and their experiences during the Spanish Civil War are connected. Here, we have 5 main families, people, themes, or time periods: The Ibañez Family, Miguel Guzmán, the Post-Franco Dictatorship era, Military Involvement during the war, and the Barrio Family.

The different colors provide a symbolization of how different each experience was during this time period. They represent each individual or family’s experiences. They also allow for differentiation between the others. The lines connecting them also show all the different ways in which these events or themes are connected across time periods and individuals.

The point of displaying data in this way is to keep viewers interested, but also to make them understand just how common experiences were during this time period: both Aparicio and the Ibañez family experienced political persecution, both families had military involvement, and the list goes on.

While always interesting, we know that data and its implications can be inaccessible or difficult to read, interpret, and analyze for many individuals. Displaying important data in a way that is visually appealing has allowed us to tell the important stories of Carmen Ibañez and Jose Barrio in a way that matters and people will remember. Reading their stories on paper or via audio can be fulfilling, but telling their stories in a manner that is measurable and exciting to view can keep them alive for ages to come.

Andrea Davis:

Again, I think this visualization needs a key and/or and explanation. What are you trying to depict here and why does this visualization help you communicate to your audience?

Andrea Davis:

Explain the significance of this chart. How does it help you understand and/or interpret the testimonies? You may also want to look into Voyant as a tool for analyzing the two interviews.

Lucas Timmermann:

This project explores the lives, hardships, and key events of Ibañez, Barrio, and their families. From a historical perspective, it fully explores the lives and fates of many different people in each family. The chart and life map explores many different outcomes of people, even if sometimes they are in very similar situations at first. It goes from military involvement, to political activism, concentration camps, to even settling down in the middle of all of this. The project explores the lives and events of both families in a very creative way. Both the chart and life map visually show major events and things that otherwise would probably take much longer to explain. While it can be a little jarring to try and understand the chart/map at first, once one studies them both, they give a sufficient amount of detail from the two family’s experiences.

This testimony is used by showing the various things and events that were key to both families on a chart and life map, or mind map. It gives general information on what happened to many people in both families. All of the points on the chart/map feel relevant to the lives of both Ibañez and Barrio. Furthermore, things in the chart are also relevant to the map and shows how they tie into the lives of the families. They show what is important to both of them and their families, which makes the treatment of the testimonies very well done. The project successfully deals with the testimonies, on a macro scale. This most likely makes it much easier to analyze both testimonies at the same time, while still trying to do as much justice as possible to both. 

The format of this project greatly enhances the interpretation that is being presented. It shows not only how Ibañez and Barrio meet and eventually marry, but also how other members of the family connect via political parties. The key themes and ideas are also shown in varying degrees of importance for the lives of both Ibañez and Barrio. However, this format does not focus on the specific details of what happened to everyone or everything in this project. It makes sense, as the project tries to juggle with two testimonies, and there might not be a whole lot of information to go off of anyway for much of these family members. 

This project is very well done and makes me want to learn more about the lives of Ibañez and Barrio. While the project felt like its primary focus was the macro study of the two families, it would be nice to give a little context before the civil war on at least the lives of Ibañez and Barrio. However, this might not be possible, as the testimonies might not give that enough information. Overall though, this is a very well done project that is very creative and informative.