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Victor Jara (1932- 1973)

Victor Jara

Victor Jara is one of the most beloved Latin American folk singers, songwriters, theatre directors and humanitarians, who was tortured and brutally murdered at the age of 41 by the forces of the 1973 CIA sponsored coup d’état in Chile.

He was born in a poor peasant family in Chile. His father left home to find a job, so it was his mother who had to raise her children in poverty. But she died soon when Victor was only 15.

A little later, Victor found himself in a seminary. There he studied to become a priest. But after a couple of years, however, he became disillusioned with the church and left the seminary.

Not only he experienced the plight and sadness of poverty, but also he witnessed the miserable life of the majority of the Chilean people under the capitalist system.

That is why he chose socialism and joined the Communist Party of Chile. He was a strong supporter of the Popular Unity coalition and the elected socialist president Dr. Salvador Allende.

The day after the September 11th, 1973 coup, Jara along with thousands of political activists were taken as prisoners and kept in Chile Stadium, there many of them were tortured and killed. Jara was repeatedly beaten and mockingly forced to play guitar with his broken bones and sing. And then, when he had defiantly sung part of a song supporting Popular Unity, he was machine gunned and his body left on a road on the outskirts of Santiago.

 

Here are some of his famous songs:


  • Canto a la Humano (1966)

  • Canciones Folkloricas de America (1967)

  • Pongo En Tus Manos Abiertas (1969)

  • Canto Libre (1970)

  • El Derecho de Vivir en Paz (1971)

  • La Poblacion (1972)

  • Cano Por Travesura (1973)

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