Adriana Alas Lopez

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

El Colegio de Michoacan

Grant number

Gr. 9511

Approve Date

October 11, 2017

Project Title

Alas Lopez, Adriana A., Colegio de Michoacan, Michoacan, Mexico - To aid research on 'The Value of War Memories: A Post-insurgency Project Through Intergenerational Negotiation in the Salvadoran Postwar Context,' suprevised by Dr. Dominique Raby

Twenty-five years after the Peace Accords in El Salvador, the basic wartime opposition between insurgents and right-wing supporters continues to inform social relations. Using recollections of the 1980-92 civil war, this research analyzes how El Salvador’s national project in the post-insurgency period takes shape as people differentially value memories of the war. The project emphasizes tensions between how former insurgents, right-wing supporters, and the children of each understand the war in La Ceiba, a rural community of former insurgents in Chalatenango. On the one hand, I want to document how people make pragmatic use of their war memories, particularly using material objects linked to those times to support claims to belonging in the post-insurgency national project. As they narrate their war experiences, I argue, former insurgents measure their narratives of suffering and the pain of their war injuries against those of right-wing supporters living in the same community. On the other hand, I want to understand how this measurement fails with former insurgents’ and right-wing supporters’ children, mostly born in the postwar period (1992). These young people, I contend, refuse to measure war suffering or war pain because they did not experience the war; they invoke their parents’ memories, but they do so in order to introduce the more inclusive category of ‘war survivors’. By tracking war memories invoked by former insurgents, right-wing supporters, and young people in their daily interactions in post-insurgency spaces like La Ceiba; this project examines the renegotiation of the post-insurgency national project between two generations