Weavers of Revolution

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Greg Parkhurst
11/2/06
Allende and the Weavers of Revolution

In Peter Winn's Weavers of Revolution, a factory in Santiago, Chile fights for their independence against the Chilean government of the 1970's. While this rebellion is going on, presidential elections are taking place and Salvador Allende is the presidential candidate which represents the common people. The relation between Allende and the people he represents is a unique one because at first this class, the working class, helps and supports Allende to become president, but then both parties realize their different plans for the future and the working class actually contributes to the downfall of Allende's presidency.

At first, the working class heavily supported Allende's campaign. A new movement of younger worker influence occurred during this time period, allowing Allende to accomplish many of the things he did. For instance, in the Yarur factory there was the "strike of 1962" which was the workers rebellion to the new Taylor system of the new generation of workers. They also rebelled because of the "union question" which revolved around three things: job security, free unions, and the elimination of the Taylor system. These were all things that Allende promised to fix, so naturally after a 9 week strike the people of the Yarur factory supported Allende and the promises he gave. All the workers in the Yarur factory were also deeply affected by the characteristics of postwar Chile: "dependency and stagflation, economic inequality and social inequality, the concentration of wealth and the persistence of poverty, the hegemony of the rich and the powerlessness of the poor" (54). These characteristics were the reasons that the working class suffered in Chile, as well as the reasons for why Allende was elected. Allende's campaign was designed around bringing social equality to Chile without violence, the opposite of countries like Cuba. Allende based his campaign around the unfairness of...
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