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The Aftermath of Political Violence : The Opposition’s Second Generation in the Post-Coup Chile and its Familial Memory

Jara, Daniela. 2013. The Aftermath of Political Violence : The Opposition’s Second Generation in the Post-Coup Chile and its Familial Memory. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

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Abstract or Description

This thesis is concerned with the aftermath and afterlife of violence (Gómez-Barris 2009) in post-coup Chile from the perspective of the second generations of victims of state violence perpetrated during the dictatorial period (1973-1988), the modes of inheritance of family political memories and the mechanisms of inhabitation of such family legacies. Drawing on Plummer’s ‘documents of life’ approach (Plummer 2001)and Avery Gordon’s theory of haunting (Gordon 2008), the research is based on thirty one family life story interviews and two group interviews.

This thesis critically dialogues with the Holocaust tradition and its legacies for the memory field, arguing for a critical awareness of ‘what is helped and what is hindered’ by its lens (Huyssen 2003). Departing from the widespread belief that trauma is something ‘other’ to everyday life, this thesis is based on Das’ assertion that political violence unfolds in the everyday life and its modes of inhabitation (Das 2007). Denaturalizing the family as a site of ‘pure memories’, the thesis is focused on family political memories of state violence and their modes of remembering and transmission to the second generation. It explores the way in which political violence has been passed on to the second generation in the form of familial legacies and embedded in local patterns of political, social and family relationships. The thesis draws attention to the context in which these memories are produced, but also sheds light on how they are transformed into stubborn memories through their familial transmission. Basing itself on this double perspective, the thesis illustrates how, as a consequence of the politics of fear, opposition memory became invested as a family possession. It explores how political memory was at the same time both something to conceal and something to inhabit and own, triggering a sense of loyalty and belonging. The thesis also shows how not every experience is rendered as a family memory but those that are undergo a process of selection in which gendered models of family relationships also play a role. Examining the production of family countermemories, the thesis concludes that the second generation makes of family memory not only a place for tradition and affective ties, but also for contestation, moral interpellation and rupture.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Sociology

Date:

2013

Item ID:

9910

Date Deposited:

03 Mar 2014 15:27

Last Modified:

09 Jul 2018 20:50

URI:

http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/9910

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