Books and Book Chapters by University of Dayton Faculty

Towards Emancipatory Human Rights Narratives

Towards Emancipatory Human Rights Narratives



This chapter explores how Daniel Ferreira’s Rebelión de los oficios inútiles [Rebellion of the Useless Trades] (2014) breaks with the established reading pacts of human rights narratives and their sentimental grammars through a historical novel centered on land tenure, the state of exception, and its connections with the right to protest and freedom of expression. This exploration underscores how Rebelión defies certain tropes in the history of violence behind fundamental human rights struggles in Colombia’s past and present. Ferreira moves from the tortured body to the peasants’ socio-economic rights, destechados (homeless), and informal workers. The novel points at the Frente Nacional and the Guerra de los Mil Días as sources for vestiges on the current debates about historical memory in Colombia. To study how Ferreira challenges such narratives, the chapter analyzes the novel through the theories of Jacques Rancière, Elizabeth S. Anker, and Robert Meister. The author proposes that Ferreira’s novel resists the sentimental commercialization of violence in the Colombian (and Latin American) cultural market while representing dissensual subjects outside the customary figures of the victim and the hero, building from Andrew Rajca’s interpretations of Rancière.



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Publication Source

Human Rights in Colombian Literature and Cultural Production




Carlos Gardeazábal Bravo is a faculty member in the Department of Global Languages and Cultures at the University of Dayton.

Towards Emancipatory Human Rights Narratives