CFP: Western European Solidarity with Chile (1970-1990)
During the Cold War, Western Europe witnessed the emergence of various social movements with an orientation to Latin America. One of the most important mobilizations for Latin America was without any doubt the movement in solidarity with Chile, which already emerged in support for the Allende government (1970-1973) but especially gained strength after the military coup of 1973. Indeed, the overthrew of the Unidad Popular government in September 1973 and the subsequent repression by the Chilean military dictatorship inspired a wave of protest and solidarity in Western Europe, which lasted until the end of the regime of Pinochet in 1990. Support for the Chilean resistance and for the many refugees which had crossed the ocean was concretized in the establishment of hundreds of Chile solidarity committees across Western Europe and in the action of a variety of other organizations, including trade unions, church groups and NGO’s. The Chilean political opposition and refugees played an active role in this solidarity, although internal political tension proved to be an important obstacle for the Western European solidarity movements.
To date, the grand-scale Chile mobilization in Western Europe has received limited attention from historians, and still is a largely unexplored phenomenon. This conference not only aims at comparing the Chile solidarity movements in various Western European countries, it also wants to give attention to transnational connections and cross-border interaction, both between solidarity groups from different European countries and between Chilean actors (refugees, opposition movements,...) and Western European groups.
After a first call for papers for a conference on “Western European solidarity with Latin America (1950s-2000s)”, the organizing committee has received a large number of proposals concerning Chile solidarity movements, while the response for other Latin American countries was considerably lower. For this reason, the organizing committee has decided to centre the conference on “Western European solidarity with Chile (1970-1990) and to launch this second call for papers. We now already have a first basis for studies on Chile solidarity in several Western European countries. As we also want other countries to be included, we particularly welcome papers on Chile solidarity movements in other countries, such as France, Spain, Italy, Greece, Sweden, Great Britain,... . Also papers focusing on the Chile issue at the level of international institutions and organizations such as the international trade union movement and the communist World Peace Council, are welcome.
Possible questions for analysis
Which groups and organizations were key in the mobilization for Chile? What were their motives, and how did they give shape to their solidarity?
What was the impact (political, cultural,...) of the presence of Chilean refugees?
Chilean opposition movements tried to mobilize Western European activists. Isabelle Allende for instance regularly toured through Western Europe in search for support. Was this strategy successful? Which groups were contacted?
Both ‘old social movements’ (trade unions and churches) and ‘new social movements’ were engaged in Chile solidarity. How was their mutual relationship, and did they have similar approaches toward the developments in Chile?
What was the relationship between Chile movements and other Third World solidarity movements, such as the movement in support of Nicaragua in the 1980s? Can we also see interaction with social movements with an orientation to Eastern Europe and with the peace movement?
Was there an important international coordination of the solidarity campaigns? What was for instance the role of the communist World Peace Council and the catholic church in the international coordination of protest?
The conference is organized by the research unit Modernity & Society 1800-2000 at K.U.Leuven and will take place in Leuven (Flanders) on 2 and 3 June 2011.
Please send your proposal (including your name, institutional affiliation or place of residence and title of paper; abstract no longer than 500 words) and a brief C.V. (in Word or PDF format) before 6 December 2010 to Mr. Kim Christiaens:
Participants whose papers have been accepted will be notified by 20 December 2010.
Please send all queries to the same address.
Blijde Inkomststraat 21, Bus 3307
3000 Leuven, Flanders
Drs. Kim christiaens
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
Subfaculty of History
Blijde Inkomststraat 21, box 3307
3000 Leuven, Flanders Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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