In the 1990s, Latin America emerged from the horror of massive and systematic human rights violations as the region returned to civilian-elected regimes. Many hoped that such transitions would bring about significant political, economic and cultural change: the rebuilding a more democratic order based on a culture of human rights that would reinvigorate democratic practices in the region. Despite the change in political regimes, such aspirations have come up against the recalcitrant realities of enduring military enclaves demanding impunity for past crimes, the persistence of neoliberal economics, ineffective and, in some cases, corrupt government coalitions, as well as the seemingly insatiable demands of private domestic and international capital for flexible labor and unregulated capital flows. The tragic events of 9/11 have become so pivotal in current debates on US domestic and foreign policy, that the other 9/11, that which took place three decades ago in Chile, seems to have been relegated to a distant footnote.
This volume aims to re-examine Chiles 9/11 a historically and symbolically charged event and to explore the lasting legacy of the transformations brought about by the oppressive regimes of the 70s and 80s as they are being experienced today in the cultural, social and intellectual life of the region.
Silvia Nagy-Zekmi is a professor of Latin American literature and cultural studies at Villanova University. She is the author of Paralelismos transatlanticos: Postcolonialidad y narrativa femenina en America Latina y Africa del Norte. Fernando Leiva is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Latin American and Caribbean Studies at the University at Albany. With James Petras, he co-authored Democracy and Poverty in Chile: The Limits to Electoral Politics (1994).