Friday, 22 August 2008

The Past in the Present

The intention of this blog was to follow the developments of Latin America's memory culture, and in particular the memory acts connected with the military dictatorships and civil conflicts of the past decades, whether they are legal proceedings, truth commissions, publications, cultural productions, and so on. Current human rights abuses were not really in my remit (a remit defined, obviously, only by myself - but let's face it, I'm looking at a pretty wide topic already by not limiting myself to just one nation). But you can't always separate past human right abuses from continuing ones. In part, this is because the urgency of crimes occurring right now tends to overtake the imperative to remember the past. In part, it's also because there is a direct connection between those rupturing events of the past - undemocratic regimes, internal conflicts with huge loss of life - and the events of the present; impunity, corruption, defective justice systems, inequality, violence against women, and so on. Just as violations such as forced disappearance and torture did not come from nowhere the day the military took power in Argentina, for example, so they did not end the second elections took place.

All of which is a way of saying, here are two examples of current atrocities which have grown out of the violent pasts of their respective nations.

Femicide in Guatemala: A Link Between Past and Present (COHA)
[See also my previous post which made the connection which explored here in a much more thorough and satisfactory way]

Colombia military atrocities alleged (LA Times)

No comments: