Saturday, 6 June 2009

Red Set

Rafa Gumucio has an entertaining piece in today's Mercurio about Chile's 'red Set'.
He makes three interesting points. First, that like any ghetto, it was founded in the quest for safety, protection and mutual support. Accusations that the red set is a leftist, elitist, exclusionary clique, sound an awful lot like things one sometimes hears about Jewish or Chinese communties around the world.
Second, I like the image of the multi-cinema having encroached on his father's Castillo Velasco community. I know that community, and indeed, it more than encroaches. It looms over, overshadows, and warns its residents that no matter how unheated your rooms and how hard your exposed brick walls are, no matter how loud you play the Internationale on your Ipod, the outside world, and capitalism, is at your doorstep. You can run but you can't hide. In the end, you lost.
Third, the image of the last vestiges of left setiness having succumbed, under the Bachelet government, to the comforts of power and corruption. Gumucio suggets this is not all that bad -- it is the final step towards acceptance and reconciliation. But it's also the end of an era.

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