“Chile before and after”: Book collects testimonies about the impact of the coup d’état in 1973

“For more than a year we worked on generating a list of people who could share their experiences and reflections with us,” says Claudio Lobos, coordinator of Ediciones UTEM (Metropolitan Technological University). In just over 300 pages, 18 people share what their lives and that of Chile were like before the 1973 coup d’état and how that day and its inevitable consequences changed the country and – by the way – their own biographies.

The book “Chile Before and After. A country transformed by Coup” reflects on education before 1973, politics, the intensity of the debate in the 60s and early 70s, the Government of President Salvador Allende, the role of the left in those years, the role of the right and the military in the Coup and in the previous crisis, the exile, the student organization, the traces of the dictatorship, among other various aspects.

The publication was born from a proposal that Editorial USACH (University of Santiago de Chile) made to Ediciones UTEM to develop together a project on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the coup d’état of 1973. Thus the idea of ​​carrying out a work that would gather testimonies arose. from various people about what Chile was like before that year and how the coup changed their lives and those of the country.

Claudio Lobos comments on cases collected in his work, such as Rosa Becerra, widow of the Paine farmer Luis Gaete Balmaceda, murdered by the dictatorship in 1973. Or Isidro García, who was President Allende’s escort as a member of the GAP and who participated in clashes with the military in the vicinity of La Moneda.

“This list was reached, which we consider diverse in terms of their activities and stories: some stayed in the country, others suffered arrests and torture, some went into exile. There are also those who got involved in the fight against the dictatorship and political activism or for Human Rights,” explains Lobos.

The complete list of stories includes Sofía Prats (daughter of General Carlos Prats and former mayor), Marcia Scantlebury (journalist, former president of the Museum of Memory and Human Rights), Mónica González (National Journalism Award), María Inés Estrada (former municipal worker ), Isidro García (former bodyguard of President Allende), Osvaldo Puccio (former minister and former ambassador), Luis Alarcón (actor, died months after giving testimony), Jacques Chonchol (former minister, also died after giving his testimony), Roberto Celedón (lawyer of Human Rights), Jorge Coulon (musician of Inti-Illimani), Diamela Eltit (writer, National Literature Award), Emilio Daroch (former student leader, president of the UTE-USACH Solidarity Corporation), Alicia Vega (film educator), Rosa Becerra (widow of a murdered Paine farmer), Soledad Bianchi (academic and essayist), Luis Corvalán Márquez (historian), Agustín Squella (jurist, National Prize for Humanities and Social Sciences) and Víctor Osorio (former minister and former student leader).

The work will be presented on Wednesday, May 29 at 7:00 p.m. in the hall of honor of the UTEM, Calle Dieciocho 161, Santiago, within the framework of the Ronald Wood Memorial and Human Rights Week of the UTEM.

Source: UTEM Communications.

Santiago, May 28, 2024.

Digital Chronicle.

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