During Pinochet’s dictatorship in Chile (1973 – 1989) human rights were systematically violated. Thousands of people were tortured, killed or disappeared. In spite of the substantial relevance and tremendous impact the massive loss of human lives signifies for a whole nation, there is another consequence that should be taken into consideration, and that is the loss of the land and the violence executed against nature. Large extensions of natural spaces were wiped out during Pinochet’s dictatorship and continue suffering the aggression of democratic governments and industrial activity. Along with the disappearance of the land, also were destroyed many other forms of life, including animals, insects, birds, plants, trees, and furthermore, native communities and their active cultural traditions were intervened. This interdisciplinary work attempts to explore the links between the study fields of environment, memory and identity studies, in order to decentralize the debate from the anthropocentric view, and therefore, explore new contributions that might come from the more than human world. Converging the disciplines of environment, memory and identity will also shed light on the human rights debate in Chile, by taking it beyond the Pinochet’s dictatorship frame (where mainly this discussion remains). Even though it is true that dictatorship changed the course of Chile’s history, it also changed the way the individual started connecting with the environment. On the one hand, the land turned into a witness of resistance amidst the new dictatorial reality, and on the other hand, became the source of natural resources that would give Chile the economic growth. Therefore, a turn to a more ecocentric perspective in these fields, will bring the possibility to discover new voices and sources of memory, that go beyond the spoken word. That is to say, a more ecocentric perspective will provide the possibility of the language of nature as a voiceless witness of the past.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. September 2019. Major: Hispanic and Luso Literatures, Cultures & Linguistics. Advisor: Ana Forcinito. 1 computer file (PDF); v, 142 pages.
Palma Zuniga, Eva.
Literatura, memoria y medioambiente en Chile. Una experiencia ecocrítica Literature, memory and environment in Chile. An ecocritic experience.
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