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Victor Jara

Born 1932 - Dead 1973

There are many people who have fight for the human rights.
and Viktor Jara was one of them.
His destiny have fascinating me for many years...



The guitar was his weapen and his music is much appreciated in Chile, both musical and cultural.

Victor Jara was born in a little suburb to Santiago. His childhood was not harmonic, because his father's drinking problems. When his father leaved home, Victor Jara was very close to his mother. Her optimistic charisma gave him faith to belief in the future.
She teach him to play guitar and she teached him also many traditional folksongs.

She died when Victor Jara was only 15 years old. He was very sad over the death of his mother, and he was trying to find some meaningful in life and began to study the folk music of Chile with som friends.
He also improved a great interest for theatre, and began to educate to acter at the School of Theater in the University of Chile and then to director.

He get involved in the politics of Chile. In 1966, he made his first solo disk. The songs of Victor Jara are filled with his thoughts on the simple people of Chile.
He had a great love for the hard working people of small towns, and many of his songs celebrate the lives of these people.
Also, because of his great love for his country, many of his songs attack injustices.

Victor Jara's devotion for his political ideal, made that he very strong supported Salvador Allende in his president campaign (1973).
Allende was a part of "Popular Unity party" and Victor Jara, along with other singers in Chile. They gave concerts in favor of Allende and his political goals.

Allende was a progressive canditate who had a great love for the people of the small towns of Chile. One of the goal in the campaign for Allende, was a consert that took place at the Stadium in Chile. Many political artists sang in favor of Allende. The campaign was a great success and Salvador Allende was the new president in Chile.
Yet there were many that did not like the choice of Allende and the military organised a attempted coup to recapture the power.
Allende was murderd and the military military seized control of the government.

On the day of this tragedy, Victor Jara was at his job in the State Technical University, which was surrounded by the military, who took Victor Jara prisoner for five horrible days. During these days, he was forced to live in cold and dirty prisons without proper food or water, but other prisoners there with him testify that during these sufferings, he was only concerned with the welfare of his fellow prisoners.
The military broked Victor Jara's hands and made other terrible things to him. and then taunted him to try sing and play his songs!!!

Even under these horrible tortures, Victor Jara magnificently sang a portion of the song of the Popular Unity party. After this, he received many brutal blows, and finally was brutally killed with a machine gun and carried to a mass grave. .
After this horrible death Victor Jara's wife Joan, was shown to his body.
She took care of her husband and gave him a proper funeral.
Because of all of the problems in Chile, she had to leave the country in secret with tapes of Victor Jara's music...

Even today, the policital and intensely human songs of Victor Jara are respected all over the world. As a result, the songs of Victor Jara are a testimony to his strength and positive view of life.

The echo of Victor Jara's songs lives for ever...




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Song by Victor Jara "Te recuerdo Amanda".

From books and newspaper articles.

Birgitta Broström COPYRIGHT 2002

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