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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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(p.236) 10 Disillusionment
Beatriz Allende

Tanya Harmer

University of North Carolina Press

Chapter ten examines Beatriz’s growing disillusionment with Chilean Left’s chances of overturning the coup and forging a revolutionary path forward. Although global solidarity had undercut the dictatorship’s reputation and drawing attention to human rights violations, left-wing resistance on the ground in Chile was decimated by repression. The Chilean Left in exile was also mired in factionalism and recrimination; its revolutionary project more contested, ambiguous, and distant than ever. From Havana, Beatriz was pessimistic about the future and the prospects for revolutionary change, but remained loyal to Cuba and the revolutionary left project she had been wedded to since the 1960s. Responsible for compiling reports on the dead and disappeared in Chile, she was also struggling to process what had happened and come to terms with her father’s death. Closer to home, she found it increasingly hard to square gendered expectations of marriage and motherhood with what she perceived to be her revolutionary duties. She was desperate to fight against the dictatorship in Chile but was not supported by Cuba’s leaders. Depressed and unable to affect what she regarded as meaningful change, she withdrew from solidarity work. Chapter ten ends with her suicide on 11 October 1977.

Keywords:   Chile, Chilean Left, Cuba, Dead and disappeared, Gender, Human Rights, Motherhood, Repression, Solidarity, Suicide

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