The Civil War Of El Salvador : Origins And Evolution Essay

The Civil War Of El Salvador : Origins And Evolution Essay

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El Salvador experienced social and political unrest since the 1960s, ending with a civil war from 1980 until the signing of peace accords in 1992. During this time, most of the scholarship from inside and outside the country focused in the war and the circumstances around it. One of the scholars, Tommie Montgomery, published “Revolution in El Salvador: origins and evolution” where she explains the social and political circumstances that justified the 1932 revolt, not to understand the event itself, but as a precedent to the civil war that was in progress in 1982. Even if Montgomery presents the first argument that goes beyond the communist influences and “brainwash”, it does not develop it beyond mentioning the context of the 1932 revolt, without any further analysis. Montgomery also challenges the media manipulation of the event, and how that represents the control of the elites over the discourse production. This marks the starting point for future scholars, looking beyond the traditional narrative.
In the 1990s, Ana Patricia Alvarenga in “Cultura y etica de la violencia: El Salvador 1880-1932” challenged the official narrative, explaining the historical roots of violence behind the 1932 revolt. Alvarenga makes emphasis in the interaction between classes, for the first time, and the agency that Indigenous people had, like the cacicazgo. Using a little bit of Freire’s oppressor-oppressed dichotomy provides a new approach to the development of the revolt, not as a day in specific but as a historical process where the violence became institutionalized.
Hector Perez Brignoli in “Indians, communists, and peasants: the 1932 rebellion in El Salvador”, part of Coffee, society, and power in Latin America, mentions the United States pers...


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...genous populations, proving that even a big part of the population was a victim of the violence, that does not eliminate all heritage, customs and manifestations of Indigenous Identity. The analysis also made the scholars wonder what were the reasons behind the government and powerful groups for wanting to create the idea of a mestizo country, denying the Indigenous heritage and minimizing the public demonstrations of Indian identity. Many of the unanswered questions in this article were the guides for the future work of Ching and Tilley in their individual careers.
For the 1990 the biggest breakthrough happened with an approaching change and new sources. New scholars were asking the right questions in order to understand the revolt in a deeper way, but also confront the official narrative and challenge the ulterior motives that the power elites had in this topic.

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