“To publish Eduardo Galeano is to publish the enemy: the enemy of lies, indifference, above all of forgetfulness. His tenderness is devastating, his truthfulness, furious.” – John Berger
The great writer Eduardo Galeano who died on April 14 at 74 wrote ferociously about the ten thousand injustices that capitalism has visited on the oppressed for centuries. He defended revolutions, defended dignity, he made visible the invisible and he did this through his formidable literature. Galeano supported trade unions, student movements, peasant and indigenous struggles, and he exposed and confronted the impunity of oppressive regimes.
In an interview done in Cuba with the Uruguayan human rights activist Macarena Gelman, Eduardo Galeano said: “I do not believe in the invulnerability of hope. Hope is human. Hope springs from us, and it therefore sometimes falls. Hope soars, hope hurts, it can heal and sometimes it does not.”
Activists and revolutionaries of Latin America (indeed from around the world) have been impacted by Galeano’s writings since the 1970s. Of the 2-3 generations of Freedom Road members, many are intimately familiar with his Open Veins of Latin America. Some consider that book as important to their political growth as Rodolfo Acuña’s seminal work Occupied America: A History of Chicanos.
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