The year 2007 marked the University of Valparaíso (UV) with fire. The crisis, in which this university was submerged, caused by the negative educational policies coming from the government, brought a series of demonstrations that unveiled this situation. In the heat of that movement, students, academics and workers of the UV, shook the people from Valparaiso with their demands for greater state funding and a structure that would allow the democratic participation of all those who were connected with the University.
This experience of active participation in a social and political movement in which our conscience was strengthened as social actors, was the spark that ignited the way to constitute the Taller de Historia Política (Workshop on Political History), which was proposed as an instance of discussion, dissemination and historiographical production driven by and for the students of the career of Pedagogy in History and Social Sciences, in order to apprehend the political, economic and social processes that have been immersed in the history of our country throughout the twentieth century.
Especifically, our work has been materialized internally in conducting discussion workshops led by guest scholars. On the external side, the organization of periodic forums in which different academics and / or socio-political actors have addressed the students of the Career and the University, referring to various topics of interest and contingency, stands out. In the same direction, a great reception has had the “Jornadas de Historia Política” (Political History Conference) that to date have held five versions.
Among the publications that the Taller de Historia Política has made, are “Para el análisis del Chile contemporáneo: Aportes desde la Historia Política” (“For the analysis of contemporary Chile: Contributions from Political History”), in which some papers of the Conference are gathered, and “Vitalizando la Historia Política. Estudios del Chile reciente (1960-2010)” (“Vitalizing Political History. Studies of the recent Chile (1960-2010)”) which has being distributed free of charge in the educational establishments of the V region and the schools of History of the country, includes original research of the members of the Taller de Historia Política.
This is how Divergencia responds to the objective of reinforcing the work in which the rest of our activity has been committed, generating a permanent space for dissemination, production and discussion around the Political History of Chile and Latin America.
We hope with our work to be a contribution to historiography and its dissemination, because in front of the amnesic constructions of the future that some political sectors promote, we firmly postulate that only on the basis of the study and knowledge of the past of the society as a whole, the understanding of the present and the projection of a future in which the injustices and inequalities of today no longer exist, will be possible. In this projection we will always be on the side of the working class and social sectors that in our study of history and in our daily lives, we have identified as those for whom the words “development” or “progress” (to mention some of the more recurrent in the discourse of the political elite), find little support in their real conditions of life, not possessing a significance different from the paradoxical classification that gives them the grammar, that is, that of mere abstract nouns.