Dictators and the Disappeared: Democracy Lost and Restored

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A companion volume to the exhibition DICTATORS AND THE DISAPPEARED: Democracy Lost and Restored, on view at Albuquerque Museum June 24 2023 – February 11, 2024.

Russ Davidson, Editor
Leslie Blaugrund Kim, Editor

The rise and imposition of military dictatorships in South America in the late twentieth century holds particular relevance today as the world has experienced a broad resurgence of authoritarianism.

Chile’s reign of terror under military dictatorship reflected through the continent’s “southern cone” countries, which included Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay, and Uruguay as democracy fell to military dictatorial rule. In time, citizens across the continent and abroad bonded in their fight against authoritarianism. Rising against oppression, they were supported by local, regional, hemispheric, and international organizations, solidarity groups, and persons in exile. By 1990, when Chile began its return to democracy, all the region’s countries had―in varying degrees―repudiated the military-authoritarian model. Marking the fiftieth anniversary of Chile’s coup d’état―which was led by Augusto Pinochet and ushered in seventeen years of repression, Dictators and the Disappeared is a timely look at a tumultuous period in Latin American history. Essays by Maryam Ahranjani, Francisco Letelier, Nancy Morris, Michael Nutkiewicz, Alicia Partnoy, and Natasha Zaretsky represent a range of topics and perspectives considering political events and what it means to live and struggle today with the legacies of past dictatorships. Two of the contributors relate their personal and harrowing experiences: Alicia Partnoy was kidnapped and imprisoned by the Argentinian army, and Francisco Letelier’s father was assassinated in Washington, DC following the overthrow of the democratic Allende government.

Drawing largely from the University of New Mexico’s Southwest Research Center’s Sam L. Slick Collection, the publication is illustrated with political posters, textiles, and other ephemera created as a form of political expression documenting the horrors experienced over several decades from the 1970s through the 1990s.

Trim: 9″ x 12″
Pages: 240
Illustrations: 150 color images

Published by the Museum of New Mexico Press
©2023

Hardcover $50