Víctor Jara (1932-1973) - the value and the grace. Of all the Chilean artists, Victor Jara, is without any doubt one of my favorites, not to say my favorite. He has recognized that to listen to its music's, with its words and their voice, it gives chills knowing how Victor Jara has died... For they do not know it, I let discover to them:
Militant of the Chilean communist party, member of the central Committee of communist youths of Chile until his murder, Jara, through his texts, tried to share his ideal of justice and its will to reconstruct one more a more egalitarian and right society. The words of Jara are committed often and very politicized. They are songs of fights in which it goes directed directly to the Chilean or South American town, to this cohort of farmers, workers, workers and revolutionaries. Victor Jara becomes the spokesperson of the underprivileged ones, of that confiscate the word.
On September 11th 1973, date of the "coup d'Etat" brought against Beyond, Jara becomes to the Technical University of the State, its place of work, to be united other professors and to students to show its refusal of the new existing power. The military, after to have surrounded to the university, enter and stops all the people who are inside.
Jara moves to the Chile Stage of Santiago, reconverted immense prison, where during several days, he contributes to support and consolation to his comrades of halting. Sings for its fellows-prisoner with the aim to return to give value to them. Asked and tortured, the military break the fingers to him to wood blow, the hands that caressed their guitar, to sack here. But the cruelty does not do more than to begin, as much for Jara as for the Chilean town. The writer Miguel Cabezas witness of the last hours of the singer provides a story before which the horror provokes the rebellion: "Victor was taken along and it was requested to him to put the hands on the table. In those of the civil employee, an axe appeared. Of a dry blow, it cut the left fingers, after another blow, those of the right hand. The fingers were listened to fall on the wood ground. The Victor's body was squashed excessively. The collective howl was understood of 6,000 prisoners. The civil employee hurried on the body of the singer-guitarist shouting: It sings now for your whore of mother, and continued coiling it of blows. Victor laboriously tried to rise and like a sleepwalker, he went towards the launching slips, their steps badly guaranteed, and its voice was understood that defied it: One is going away to make please the commander. Increasing its hands oozing of blood, with a voice caused sorrow, it began to sing the hymn of the popular Unit, that everybody resumed in choir. This was too much for the military; a burst was extracted and Victor bent next. Other bursts were made hear, destined those to which had sung with Victor. There was a true collapse of body, falling sifted of bullets. The shouts of the wounded were horrible. However, Victor not listen them. One had died".
Dies on September 16th, just a short time before to celebrate its 41 years. His body, sifted of 34 impacts of automatic weapons, is with five other people near the metropolitan cemetery.
Now, the horror has stopped and the blood dried. Chile not yet has finished with this past that does not happen. The stage Chile of Santiago, place of deportation and seat of as much horror, exactions and of tortures, take in ahead the Victor Jara's name, singer contracted, citizen humanist who until the hour of his death demonstrated an exemplary value, subscriber of their life their ideal of justice to have simply "the right to live peacefully"
Hector Roberto Chavero, kown as Atahualpa Yupanqui was born in Pergamino (Buenos Aires district) on January 31st 1908. He was an Argentine poet, singer and guitar player.
He had chosen his pen name when still in his teens: it was coined with "Atahualpa", the last Inca emperor, assassinated by Pizarro's conquistadores, and "Yupanqui" (i.e the great deserving fellow), the famous supreme Quechua Indian cacique. His father was of Quechua descent, his mother was Basque. As early as aged 6, he took to learning to play violin and guitar.
After his father's death, in 1921, he decided to become an artist, taking up various jobs to make a living. Travelling through his immense country, facing peasants' extreme poverty, either Indians or half breeds, he naturally became their spokemean through his first compositions - Camino del indio (Indian's way) Nostalgia de Tucuman (Tucuman's Nostalgia). In 1928, then a journalist in Buenos Aires, he met Alfred Metraux, with whom he explored Bolivia. His intimate knowledge of beings, landscapes and Indians' spirit and ancestral customs have nurtured his inspiration.
He started his career in France, in the year 1950. He was introduced to the French audience by Edith Piaf (the famous singer), in the Athénée theatre in Paris. Soon he acquired some fame and started friendly relationships with poets (Louis Aragon, Paul Eluard), or artists (Pablo Pisasso, Rafael Alberti). During that period, he carried on artistic tours worldwide. His repertoire counted no less that 1,500 songs, keping up with the melodic framework of Argentinian folklore. He composed many milongas, chacareras, vidalas, zambas, and bagualas, not to mention mere canciones.
He died on May 23rd 1992 in Nimes (France). According to his last wishes, his body has been carried back to his native country, where he lies, in Cerro Colorado (Cordoba, Argentina).
Mercedes Sosa is a famous Argentinian singer, born in San Miguel de Tucuman. Quite popular throughout Latin America, she has been nicknamed la Negra (the black one) by her fans. Her quite peculiar voice allowed her to sing countless folkloric songs, as well as more recent tunes especially composed for her. She happened to sing as well some songs taken from Violetta Parra's or Atahualpa Yupanqui's repertoires.
After Jorge Videla's dictatorial coup, she was compelled to exile in Paris, then in Madrid.
She went back to Argentina in 1982, a few months before the fall of the military regime. She organised a great concert in Buenos Aires Opera, to which several artists took part. The record of this artistic event has become a true collector item.
She has become a goodwill ambassador to UNESCO in Latin America and Caribbean (with Alyssa Milano to the UNICEF in the USA)
Pablo Neruda was born on July 12th 1904. His mother was a school mistress. She died one month after his birth. At 13, some of his poems and prose writings had already been published. From 1921, he took to studying pedagogy, French language and literature in Santiago. Then he chose his pen name as homage to the Czech poet Jan Neruda and wanted to become a French teacher.
In 1927, Neruda became a diplomat and was appointed consul to Rangoon, Columbo, Batavia, Calcutta, and Buenos Aires. From 1935, he was appointed consul to Spain.
There he would build up friendly relationships with Federico Garcia Lorca whose acquaintance he had previously made in Buenos Aires. The Spanish poet’s influence on his life and his work were to be determining. After Franco's fascist coup on July 18th and Lorca's assassination, he became the champion of the Spanish Republican cause. He travelled to Mexico, Cuba, Peru, visiting Inca Machu Picchu fortress. In 1945, He was elected Senator and joined the Chilean Communist party.
In 1946, Neruda had been in charge of Gonzalez Videla's electoral campaign. Unfortunately, once in office, Videla would soon reveal unexpected dictatorial and fiery anti communist feelings. After the violent repression of a Communist-led miners' strike in Lota, in October 1947, the poet did react, giving a famous dramatic speech in the Chilean Senate on January 6th 1948 called "Yo accuso" (from Zola's famous "J'accuse" (I accuse !) on Dreyfus' behalf !) He narrowly escaped arrest. He was smuggled from house to house, hidden by supporters and admirers for the next thirteen months. He finally succeded in crossing the Andes to Argentina and took refuge abroad. During his exile, he travelled in USSR, Poland, Hungary, Italy, visiting as well India and Mexico. There would be issued in 1950 his clandestinely writen - and quite Whitmanesque - Canto General (Universal Song), which was immediately banned in Chile.
In 1949, he made a surprise appearance to the World Congress of peace Forces in Paris. In 1955 he was awarded with Pablo Picasso as a joint distinction the International Prize for Peace.
In 1953, he was awarded the International Stalin Prize for Peace. Meanwhile, he had met the only woman for him, Matilde Urrutia, who was to become his muse, and inspired him to write strikingly beautiful erotically charged love poems such as Cien Sonetos de Amor (One Hundred Love Sonnets).
He returned to Chile in 1952. Two years later, he published his Elementary Odes. In 1957 he became president of the Chilean Writer Union. The following year, he published Extravagario. (Vague Ramblings).
During that same year (1957), and again in 1964, he heartily supported Salvador Allende Goosens' presidential electoral campaign. In 1969, being nominated by the Communist party as the official candidate for the Chilean Presidency, he finally resigned in favour of Salvador Allende, who was to run for the presidency as the only Popular Union's champion. After Allende's election, Neruda was appointed as Chilean ambassador to France.
On october 21st 1971, following Gabriela Mistral in 1945, and Miguel Angel Asturias in 1967, he was the third South American writer to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.
In 1972, his return to Chile ocasioned a triumphal meeting at the Santiago Stadium.
After Pinochet's coup d'etat (September 11th 1973) and Allende's death, Neruda's houses in both Valaparaiso and Santiago were looted and vandalized, and his books publicly burned. Just a few days later, on September 23rd 1973, Neruda died of pancreas cancer. Albeit the presence of appalling and massive police forces, mourners took advantage of the occasion to protest military terror.
In 1974, Neruda's autobiography (Confieso que he vivido: I just confess I've lived my life) was posthumously published. Colombian novelist Gabriel Garcia Marquez once called him "the greatest poet of the XX century in any language". Today, Neruda's three houses in Chile are all open to the public as museums: la Chascona in Santiago, La Sebastiana in Valparaiso, and la Casa de la Isla Negra, in Isla Negra, where he and Matilde Urrutia are buried.
Jorge Luis Borges (Buenos Aires August 24th 1899 - Geneva June 14th 1986) was an Argentine poet and writer. His true name was Jorge Francisco Luis Borges Acevedo, but, complying with Argentinian tradition, he would never use it in full...
Borges has been considered by some critics as one of the founding fathers of the "magic latin American realism school". As such, he ranks as one of the leading XX century South American fiction writers. But he is considered as well by a few others as a writer and thinker of universal range... When still rather young, he became progressively blind; a trouble which doubtless influenced his works a great deal.
He was deeply concerned with erudition, without disdaining some kind of misleading paths sometimes mischieviously proposed to his readers (Tion Ugbar Orbis Tertius). Quite often his works dealt with Nature and Infinity (Babel Bookcase, the Sand Book), mirrors, labyrinths, reality, identity, or even ubiquity (Babylon Lottery).
Side by side with his fictional works,
Francisco Coloane was a Chilean writer. Born on July 19th 1910 in Quemchi, Chiloe, he died on August 5th 2002 in Santiago. He used to write tales and short stories, mainly dealing with austral life. At 9, his father died: he was a former whale hunter and tugboatcaptain. In 1923, Francisco moved to Punta Arenas, to the extreme South of the country, settled there with his mother, and started training to the An cud seminary. When he was 16, his mother's death compelled him to quit studying. For a rather long period, he had to get on with various jobs. As a sailor's son, quite used to sea voyages, Francisco Coloane had sailed through Chiloe canals from infancy. He had lived a few years as a child in Puerto Montt, but he has known his most vivid experiences in Punta Arenas and more precisely in the Tierra del Fuego unlimited spaces. His novels quite accurately evoke undervalued areas of Chilean geography. They will recapture the simple lives of local victorious folks, prey to an incessant struggle where magic, mystery, reality and legend are closely entwined.
His bibliography is quite abundant. Let's quote among the prominent works Cape Horn, and Tierra del Fuego (1994), Antardida (1997) The End of the World Passer-by (2000) or even his last novel Shipwrecks (2002). The whole of his work has been translated into manifold foreign languages. Some novels have even been adapted as movies... (Such as Miguel Littin's, based on "Tierra del Fuego") "The World passer-by", as he acutely defined himself, remains one of the leading Chilean writers in the XX century.
Patagonia in all seasons menu. For example, according to the climate, from Bariloche, in Patagonia Argentina, it is possible to go to Puerto Montt, in Chile, crossing successively three lakes by boat, as did the Jesuits and the first German settlers. I offer a tour that leads to the Pacific Ocean. It is quite long, but the beauty of the sites - forests, volcanoes and crystalline lakes - is such that it is worth to be carried. The Argentine side, cross the west arm of Nahuel Huapi and Lake Puerto Alegre and, the chilen side, Lake Todos los Santos. Moving from one lake to another by bus. This tour is feasible in all seasons, but in winter, it takes two days to reach Puerto Montt, stopping for one night at Peulla. We returned to Bariloche by air or by the same way, after a night in Puerto Montt. Borispatagonia is also responsible for visas to go to Chile and to book hotels. In Patagonia, winter and summer are tourist seasons. In summer, besides explore the surrounding, many activities are available: climbing, torrent fishing, sailing, horseback riding, hiking, rides, visits to Aciendas... In winter, the main activity is, of course, skiing, especially in July and August on the side of the Andes, but not only: snowshoe hikes, thematic tours, many walks to admire the beauty of Patagonia Argentina and Chile in this season, due a unique light, the warmth of the people of Patagonia... Just to talk about, I get goose bumps!