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Beatriz AllendeA Revolutionary Life in Cold War Latin America$
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Tanya Harmer

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781469654294

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469654294.001.0001

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Reform and Radicalization

Reform and Radicalization

(p.84) 4 Reform and Radicalization
Beatriz Allende

Tanya Harmer

University of North Carolina Press

Chapter four examines the emergence of a revolutionary left in Chile in the first years of Eduardo Frei’s presidency. Although this process would not dominate left-wing politics at a national level until later in 1960s, it resonated soon after Allende’s 1964 electoral defeat, influenced both by reformist projects and repressive efforts to contain them. By 1966, Beatriz was part of a weak but emergent revolutionary wing of the Chilean Socialist Party, inspired by local circumstances and international influences. These first years of the Frei government were dynamic, and productive. Beatriz and her cohort of medical students and socialist militants came into direct contact with the state’s new approach to healthcare, family planning, women, agricultural reform, and poverty. Beatriz benefitted from, and was shaped by, the reformist environment she inhabited, emerging like many of the radical left as a product of combined frustrations and opportunities it provided. By 1967, Beatriz had her first formal job in a community health center, epitomizing many of the Christian Democrat’s reformist goals. Closer to home, she had also fallen in love and married a young Socialist Party militant, Renato Julio, involved in effervescent student politics.

Keywords:   Agricultural reform, Chile, Eduardo Frei, Family Planning, Love, Medicine/Medical School, Reform, Revolutionary Left, Student politics, Youth

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