Chile

Chile_Aysén_movement_photo_by_Periodico_El_Ciudadano-sm“Neoliberalism slammed Chile first and hardest of all the Latin American countries, rammed through by the September 11, 1973 military coup. Chile’s 9-11 overthrew the country’s elected Marxist president and installed the dictatorship of General Augusto Pinochet, whose seventeen-year reign of terror aimed to stamp out socialism and implant the “free-market” system so deeply in the country’s economy, politics and society that it could never be uprooted. Chile still lives under the dictatorship-era constitution and suffers the greatest income inequality and poorest education quality of any country in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. But the country’s long tradition of democracy and working-class organizing—which persisted even in the depths of the dictatorship—has begun to revive. In 2011–2012 massive protests rocked Chile like the earthquakes that so often jolt this long, narrow country, and the social movements began to shake the whole neoliberal edifice.”

—Marcy Rein, “Chile Reclaims its History of Resistance,”
from Until the Rulers Obey

Until the Rulers Obey features five interviews from Chile:

Edmundo Jiles, José Calderón Miranda Human Rights Committee          “Our challenge is creating a political movement with a transformative capacity.”

Iván Fuentes, Social Movement for Aysén
“That the resources of Chile go to four or five families: that’s the real violence.”  

La Negra, feminist activist
 “Do what you have to do at a micropolitical level.”

José Ancalao, Federation of Mapuche Students
     “What unites us should be the deep-rooted feeling of being Mapuches and wanting to reclaim our rights, language, identity.

Marjory Cuello, Confederation of Chilean Students (CONFECH)
“Students alone will not change education.”

Photo: Mobilization during the 45-day uprising in Aysén in 2012. Licensed under creative commons by El Ciudadano.