María Seoane, the great “builder of unity” | Tribute from the cultural inter-union Radar at the Book Fair

María Seoane, the great “builder of unity” | Tribute from the cultural inter-union Radar at the Book Fair
María Seoane, the great “builder of unity” | Tribute from the cultural inter-union Radar at the Book Fair

The militant. The passionate one. The award-winning journalist and writer. The friend, the one she taught. The diver of history, the author of articles that became books and books that became films. The great political armorer. The great hostess. The tireless project generator. The one who fought for the culture of the workers. The one with the always ready smile. In all those ways she was remembered and honored yesterday at the Book Fair Maria Seoane. It was on a panel organized by a space that she created and defended: Radar, the cultural inter-union that emerged in 2016, a commitment to resistance from the culture of the labor movement. The journalist Telma Luzzani and the Culture Secretaries of Metrodelegates, Jorge Tano Pissani; from Sadop, Javier Mauad; from Suterh, Noemí Geminiani, from UPSA, Alejandra Stella; from UTE, Carlos Guerrero; of the Buenos Aires Graphic Federation, Claudio Cristaudi, among other union leaders present in the room, were in charge of replacing Seoane’s word, drawing loving profiles and sharing memories always crossed by emotion.

The Horacio González room dThe Book Fair, with all its chairs full, was the right setting for a tribute of this type, which began with the word of Seoane herself, at this same fair, when Radar was launched, and which culminated with the last document of the intersyndicalist of culture: “Without work there is no freedom, without unions there will be no rights, without culture there will be no Argentina”. “It is a difficult moment, in which fierce capitalism reigns, where we have entered what the dominant culture calls post-truth, that device that has found the power for people to vote guided by dark passions and not by their rights,” he said. I heard the journalist say from the screen at that inauguration in 2016. “The few spaces of resistance are in popular culture and in the historical transmission of that popular culture,” she warned.

At this meeting at the Book Fair, the intellectual Seoane, the author of so many books, was remembered. The best seller on The night of the pencilsco-authored with Héctor Ruiz Núñez, or his biography of Jorge Rafael Videla, or that of Mario Roberto Santucho, or The cursed bourgeois, about José Ber Gelbard. And many others in society: Evita, that woman, in joint work with Víctor Santa María; Juan Perón, that man, written with Gisela Marziotta; either Moments, the work dedicated to Astor Piazzolla that he did with Víctor Hugo Morales, also for Editorial Octubre. She also played her role as director of Radio Nacional, from 2009 to 2015, and in the Comunicadores de la Argentina (Comuna) space, from where she fought for the Media Law. But, above all, she was reminded of the militant Seoane committed to culture and union life.


At the table dedicated to the journalist and writer who died last December 27, at the age of 75, a poster was hung that, those present agreed, summarizes what the columnist of Page 12 and journalistic and editorial advisor of Faces and masks: “The Homeland defends itself. No to the DNU“.

I thought a lot about María at the university march the other day. I told my colleagues: You know? Maria must be flying over here. And he must be saying: But, again, fighting for the same thing?!” Noemí Geminiani said with loving nostalgia, remembering his work with her in the Culture area of ​​Suterh. “When Víctor (Santa María, head of the union) told me: you are going to work with María Seoane, I said: but what am I going to do with María Seoane, no less? And the truth is, here they talked about Mary’s generosity. But they fell short. Because she was very, very generous. For the Suterh workers, she was a teacher,” she thanked.

“As a journalist, María was fascinating, she always gave a twist to all the topics. She also had a prodigious memory, she was a walking encyclopedia, and she had that thing that was so important to the job, smell, perception,” recalled her friend Telma. Luzzani, who shared several editorials with her. “She didn’t find it impossible. We reviewed the topics of the week and she always went for everything, she lost the most difficult thing. It was like that in life, she lived with that enthusiasm,” she described her.

He also recalled his “obsession with leaving testimony and understanding,” reviewing the stories he told, his anecdotes from exile, and everything he put into his books. “How much would he be fighting today, when the history of looting is repeated. Because his story is today,” she reflected, citing one of Seoane’s works, The looting of Argentinawhich describes the political project of Menemism and the auction of the State.

Unit Builder

In turn, Javier Mauad, from the Sadop teaching union, recalled the history of the formation of Radar, “in the first fateful summer of Macrism.” And the project prior to Radar, El Prisma Obrero, focused on creating archives, “left us with a pending task,” he noted. “Everything arose from a meeting and a talk and, by magic of mary, we were two guilds and we ended up being twenty. With the split labor movement, Maria was a wonderful builder of unityand conductor of this space.

This unity, in fact, is reflected in the formation of Radar since its emergence, as an articulated space between the Secretariats of Culture of different unions of the CGT and the CTA of the Workers. “We were perhaps María’s last space for militancy, and that is an enormous responsibility,” Mauad concluded.

“The space began to take shape in September 2016, at a founding meeting at the headquarters of Suterh, the union of building managers. And there was María with Father (Domingo) Bresci, priest of option for the poor, and secretaries of Culture of more than twenty unions from the different labor confederations of the CGT, Corriente Federal and CTA, willing to build unity in defense of the life, work and culture of Argentines,” Alejandra Stella, from the UPSA union, also recalled. senior aeronautical personnel.

Seoane’s generosity was once again the center of the portrait drawn by Jorge Pissani, from Metrodelegates. “She was generous in everything, in militancy, in daily gestures, even in the agenda: she never tied down one of those contacts that open doors to carry out common projects,” he recalled her. The legacy left by the journalist and cultural manager, in her words, forces us to “deepen the work of the Culture Secretariats of the unions to improve the lives of workers.”

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