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Suggested Reading
Basualdo, Carlos, ed. Tropicália: A Revolution in Brazilian Culture. São Paulo: Cosac Naify, 2005. Calado, Carlos. Tropicália: A história de um revoluçao musical. São Paulo: Editora 34, 1997. Campos, Augusto de, et al. Balanço da bossa e outras bossas. 2nd ed. São Paulo: Perspectiva, 1974. Coelho, Frederico, and Sérgio Cohn, eds. Tropicália. Rio de Janeiro: Beco de Azougue, 2008. Dunn, Christopher. Brutality Garden: Tropicália and the Emergence of a Brazilian Counterculture. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2001. Favaretto, Celso. Tropicália: Alegoria, Alegria. São Paulo, Editora Ateliê, 1996. Schwarz, Roberto. “Culture and Politics in Brazil, 1964–1969.” In Misplaced Ideas, 126–59. Veloso, Caetano. Tropical Truth: A Story of Music and Revolution in Brazil. Translated by Isabel de Sena. New York: Knopf, 2002.

Marta Cabrera “Violence,” from the Latin violentia (vehemence, impetuousness), appears at the end of the Middle Ages to describe the exercise of physical force against a person. Though it is generally understood with some sense of certainty, “violence” is a notoriously difficult term to define with a universally applicable definition. The concept, in fact, has only expanded from its medieval connotation in response to theoretical needs. Paul Heelas, for example, makes a comparative analysis of notions of violence in various societies from a radically contextualist stance. From a temporal perspective, John Keane stresses the historicity of the term, as well as its relentlessly expanding usages. Certainly, neither Heelas’s contextualism nor Keane’s historicization exhausts the possibilities of signification of the term, but both help to delineate the contours of a vision of violence that stems from culture. Given this cultural character, Keane suggests that the term be treated as an ideal-type, as a selection of some aspects of reality that are never found in their pure form. From a genealogical standpoint, violence appears as a concept in classical philosophy, staged in its symbolic forms in Greek tragedy and associated with the irrational, reappearing at the end of the eighteenth century in the work of Hegel, and then theorized by Georges Sorel and later by Marx

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and Engels. In the writings of these last, violence appears as a necessary element in attaining political goals embodied in social and historical change. Sorel would take violence beyond the level of the instrumental to make it a key factor in the transformation of revolutionary consciousness (a point that Slavoj Žižek takes up more recently in Revolution). Sorel’s influence on other theorists such as Walter Benjamin and Georg Lukács is evident; for both, the relationship between the violence required to overthrow bourgeois institutions and legality was problematic. For Hannah Arendt in On Violence, similarly, revolution was possible without violence. With the advent of decolonization and the minority movements of the 1960s, new perspectives theorizing violence appeared. In this context, Frantz Fanon would adapt the Marxist take on violence with regard to the relationship between First and Third World in Black Skin, White Masks (1952) and The Wretched of the Earth (1961). In these projects the colonial classes assume the role of the bourgeoisie, and the peasants of the colonies that of the proletariat. The role of violence here is to help the colonized achieve revolutionary consciousness through confrontation with their oppressors. In modernity, violence is increasingly linked to rationalization and instrumentality (Horkheimer and Adorno; Foucault; Deleuze), mediated by institutions and exerted by bureaucratic actors (who fill out forms, press buttons, keep statistics); it is at the root of the industrialized massacres of the last century. The cases analyzed by Michel Foucault in Discipline and Punish, in which subjects’ bodies are deliberately confined against their will in the name of the improvement of discipline, where violence is privatized (removed from the public domain) and sanitized and hidden behind the walls of a prison or a hospital or a nursing home, also fall into this category. For Raymond Williams, violence reflects contemporary ideas and values including aggressive behavior, vehement conduct, violations against property or dignity, and the use or threat of physical force, as well as the dramatic performance of any of these elements (Keywords). David Riches, on the other hand, argues that violence is a social resource—both action and imagery culturally situated, it can be practical or symbolic, visible or invisible (in the case of witchcraft, for example), physical or emotional, and can come from an individual or society. For Pierre Bourdieu the range of social events that qualify as violence is so broad that it might include any act resulting in distress (Outline), to the point of reaching, for example, Johan Galtung’s definition, which includes all that can be avoided and that impedes the personal fulfillment of a human being (“Violence”). This symbolic

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violence, contained in the hegemonic practices of everyday life, is key, in the opinion of feminist and subalternist critique, in articulating relations of domination and subordination. The concept of symbolic violence has similarities with Galtung’s structural violence, where there are no actors but rather social structures that discriminate and exploit. The concept of cultural violence, also Galtung’s, then refers to the legitimization of such structures through their symbolic mechanisms nestled in “religion and ideology, language and art, empirical science and formal science (logic, mathematics)” (“Cultural Violence” 291). This particular dimension of legitimization of a particular form of violence with both epistemic and material consequences relates as well to the notion of epistemic violence developed by Gayatri Spivak in her essay “Can the Subaltern Speak?” In this text Spivak argues that epistemic violence results from the silencing of the subaltern in postcolonial discourse by both colonial and patriarchal power. Building on this discussion, as well as on the work of Beatriz González Stephan, Santiago Castro Gómez suggests that Latin America was well acquainted with these processes. There, the social sciences, politics, and such institutions as schools, hospitals, the law, and the constitutions jointly built devices to create ideal models of subjectivity as well as its Others. This system, the modern/colonial world-system, has a geopolitical dimension and needs also to be contemplated from the perspective of longue durée (Braudel; Wallerstein) and positioned largely on the notion of coloniality of power (Quijano). Contemporary forms of violence arising from the context of advanced globalization and erosion of state power offer a field of analysis from a cultural perspective. Though macro-approaches were privileged during the Cold War at the expense of internal dynamics—seen as mere reflections of the confrontation between superpowers—other categories of violence along with other forms of analysis have emerged more recently. For example, notions like the “clash of civilizations” (Huntington) and the “new wars” (Kaldor)—characterized by the breakdown of boundaries between revolutionary struggle, organized crime, and human rights violations—have appeared as frameworks for analysis, and other lines of conflict have been identified, such as religious, ethnic, and nationalist tensions and, more recently, terrorism. This enlarged perspective of the phenomenon implies referring to superimposed forms of violence rather than to a single violence. In this context, explanations of political violence have yielded to other forms of analysis that focus on symbolic or expressive manifestations such

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as pain or cruelty, which link the senses to representations of violence. Thus the field of analysis of violence has been reconfigured as a result of the emergence of new movements and players with new perceptions and possibilities for intervention, along with the need for interdisciplinary perspectives—given the limitations of the disciplines of the social sciences to account for such a multifaceted phenomenon. For Coronil and Skurski, the body becomes the intersection between individuality and collectivity. Assertions of power aimed at communities are inscribed and occur through the body, the place where history ultimately takes place (290). This perspective has been productive in the analysis of some contemporary cases where the body (and its destruction) is central (Aretxaga; Feldman). In the case of Colombia, for example, Maria Victoria Uribe’s and Elsa Blair’s work on the phenomenon of massacres exposes them as a mise-en-scène imbued with meaning, where it is not enough to kill the other, but becomes essential to reveal their suffering and their final destruction through the mutilation and subsequent manipulation of their body parts. From this point of view, violence can be seen as a form of communication, as a “social text” (Castillejo) that combines two fundamental factors: on the one hand, the visibility and sensuality of the violent act, and on the other, its intelligibility across multiple cultural contexts (Riches). State violence, by contrast, produced obvious consequences that are both physical (deaths, disappearances, torture) and psychological (fear, anxiety). Although the tortured, maimed body is not displayed, symbolic violence is added to physical violence precisely through the invisibilization of the body and by the lack of public knowledge regarding its final fate. In this (phantom) public sphere where there are no bodies, only terror and absence, mourning must be transferred to the private sphere, depriving individuals and the community of fundamental rituals. Beatriz Sarlo describes how the “politics of the Argentine dictatorship” (“Política” 104) privatized the public sphere and depoliticized social life, which is why the response of artists and intellectuals, though marked by fear, still tried to represent this context as well as to articulate a “critique of the present” (34)—a term associated with Raymond Williams’s structures of feeling. In the case of Chile, the so-called Escena de Avanzada articulated a series of informal experimental artistic and literary practices identified with opposition to dictatorship and restoration of democracy. In the words of Nelly Richard, and in a manner similar to that expressed by Sarlo: “Under such conditions of surveillance and censorship, artistic-cultural production becomes the substitute field—displaced and compensatory—that allows what

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is forbidden by official discourse to relocate in indirect figurations” (“La Escena” 104, translation ours). In Latin America, however, organized violence and micro-violence (Salazar) coexist with forms of state violence or violence derived from situations of armed conflict. This testifies to the deterioration of the social pact due to a multitude of transnational actors—paramilitaries, gangs, guerrilla groups, drug traffickers—who install regimes of paralegality in the interstices left by the neoliberal Latin American state (Reguillo, “La construcción”). The urban environment in Latin America has become the main forum for experiencing violence, and it needs to be narrated—that is, mediated by stories and the mass media (García Canclini, Consumers). These stories largely articulate a widespread sense of insecurity, of fear as “individually experienced, socially constructed, and culturally shared” (Reguillo, “La construcción” 189, translation ours). Fear responds to perceptions of unavoidable violence, of danger, that, although linked to the individual, are socially produced through notions of risk and threat that generate a standardized response; they are thus “everyday experiences that point to the urban feeling of widespread helplessness and the risk of paralysis or the pursuit of repressive mechanisms capable of controlling the disorder” (Rotker 16–17, translation ours). A connected issue arises, that of the visibility of violence, in which the mass media plays a double role: it exposes social conflicts that reveal undesirable facets of the state, and it produces an informative agenda based on crime, thus stigmatizing certain subjects or sectors while favoring policies of security. Fear becomes a central feature of the mediatic narration of violence through the production of an unmanageable, irrational environment (Martín Barbero, “La ciudad”). This analytical perspective is based on the studies on “moral panic” by Stuart Hall and the Glasgow University Media Group (Hall et al., Policing), according to which the media reproduce dominant institutional relations, reinforcing and mobilizing social forces against individuals or groups that allegedly threaten established values at a particular moment. Thus the mass media produce “criminal subjects”—often marginal subjects—through processes of information selection and discursive strategies that operate as social control mechanisms. For Reguillo, the overexposure of “current” violence runs parallel to the invisibilization of structural violence as a result of the lack of historical perspective and/or political context, producing a perceived need “to discipline” a society reduced to the category of passive victim (“La construcción).

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In violent contexts there are consequences not only of this form of mediation but of the penetration of fear in daily life: Firstly, the articulation of collective national stories is hindered and replaced by discontinuous and fragmented narrations. Secondly, the creation of public spaces for dialogue and debate is stalled, as are commemorations as places for collective mourning and political pedagogy.

Suggested Reading
Blair, Elsa. “Mucha sangre y poco sentido: La masacre: Por un análisis antropológico de la violencia.” Boletín de Antropología 18, no. 35 (2004): 164–84. Castro Gómez, Santiago. “Ciencias sociales, violencia epistémico y el problema de la ‘invención del otro.’” In Lander, La colonialidad del saber, 145–61. Coronil, Fernando, and Julie Skurski. “Dismembering and Remembering the Nation: The Semantics of Political Violence in Venezuela.” Comparative Studies in Society and History 33 (1991): 288–337. García Canclini, Néstor. Consumers and Citizens: Globalization and Multicultural Conflicts. Translated by George Yúdice. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2001. Martín Barbero, Jesús. “La ciudad: Entre medios y miedos.” In Rotker, Ciudadanías del miedo, 29–35. Quijano, Aníbal. “Colonialidad del poder, cultura y conocimiento en América Latin.” In Pensar (en) los intersticios: Teoría y práctica de la crítica poscolonial, edited by Santiago Castro-Gómez, Oscar Guardiola-Rivera, and Carmen Millán de Benavides, 99–109. Bogotá: CEJA, 1999. Reguillo, Rossana. “La construcción social del miedo: Narrativas y prácticas urbanas.” In Rotker, Ciudadanías del miedo, 185–202. Richard, Nelly. “La Escena de Avanzada y su contexto histórico-social.” In Copiar el Edén: Arte reciente en Chile = Copying Eden: Recent Art in Chile, edited by Gerardo Mosquera. Santiago: Puro Chile, 2006: 103–19. Rotker, Susana. Ciudadanías del miedo. Caracas: Nueva Sociedad, 2000. Sarlo, Beatriz. “Política, ideología y figuración literaria.” In Ficción y política: La narrativa argentina durante el proceso militar, edited by Daniel Balderston et al., 30–59. Buenos Aires: Alianza, 1987. Uribe, María Victoria. Matar, rematar y contramatar: Las masacres de la violencia en el Tolima, 1948–1964. Bogotá: Cinep, 1996.