democraciaAbierta

Hearing the Chilean call: Emotional liberation, reflexivity and the return of 'the people'

The uprising served as an emotional detonator that triggered spiralling distrust of power, of the economic elite, and of the ideological notion of meritocracy. But it also brought a sense of hope in the potential for collective solutions.

Oscar Mac-Clure Emmanuelle Barozet José Conejeros Claudia Jordana
4 November 2020
People gather at Plaza Baquedano on the day Chileans voted in a referendum to decide whether the country should replace its 40-year-old constitution, written during the dictatorship of Gen. Augusto Pinochet, in Santiago, Chile, Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020
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Pablo Rojas Madariaga/NurPhoto/PA Images

On 18 October 2019, Chile felt the first tremors of a social crisis that would rock the country over the coming months. Based on a series of focus groups, this article offers an unprecedented overview of the collective emotions that surfaced during the upheaval. The uprising served as an emotional detonator that triggered spiralling distrust of power, of the economic elite, and of the ideological notion of meritocracy. Over the course of the movement, the word pueblo re-emerged in the social narrative, along with a sense of hope in the potential for collective solutions, and new opportunities for discussion of problematic issues which for many years had been the subject of resigned acceptance. This surge in discussion is key: in order for the uprising to lead ultimately to meaningful social change, it is vital that the Chilean people listen to one another and, in particular, to those in less privileged positions.

“People were frightened; they would talk in whispers (...) but now the students... they’ve found the power to stand up and say, “No! We’ve had enough!”

(A.P., housekeeper from the working-class district of Estación Central in Santiago)

Times have been hard since 18 October 2019, known to Chileans as 18/O, the day that marked the eruption of violent protests on the streets of the nation’s capital, Santiago. While many began to dream of a bright new future, more than a few were struggling to make it from one day to the next and even finding themselves on the receiving end of police brutality. The uprising awakened unfamiliar feelings and emotions that had, for decades, lain suppressed and dormant. In a survey conducted by the Chilean Centre for Public Studies (CEP) in December 2019, 50% of respondents reported feeling “very” or “extremely” angry at the situation; 31% said they felt scared, while 34% expressed hope.

Although the survey succeeded in highlighting the resurgence of these relatively collective feelings, little or no attention had been paid to general sentiments within the population prior to 18/O. As such, this article studies the expression and perception of collective emotions following the outbreak of social upheaval, attempting to gain an understanding of the social effects precipitated by the uprising. Given the intensity of emotion – and indeed violence – triggered by the events, we ask the following questions: What is the nature of these collective feelings? How have they been experienced within different groups? Who or what is the target of these feelings?

Listening to the people in the midst of the uprising

The following is the product of sociological research using focus groups, one of the most effective tools for exposing the voices of ordinary people. Focus groups bring together an assortment of unrelated individuals in order to discuss issues posed by the researchers. In this case, the themes covered were all to do with the uprising in Chile. The methodology permits participants to step outside the everyday rhythm of their thoughts and open themselves up to an exercise of reflection on their experiences, musings and feelings. The focus group format, unlike personal interviews or questionnaires, promotes natural conversation, and at the end of the sessions, many participants commented that discussing things as a group had prompted them to think about and question their own opinions.

In the weeks that followed 18/O, we met with six groups in the Chilean capital, Santiago, and three in the southern port city of Puerto Montt. Each group consisted of six people from the upper-middle, lower-middle or lower social strata, selected according to occupation, sex, income and education criteria. We had in fact been meeting with the Santiago-based groups prior to the uprising in order to explore the social and symbolic markers of social inequality in Chile, and this enabled us to contrast the flow of opinion and sentiment prior to and following the outbreak of protests. The conversation was supported by a set of cards or vignettes displaying information about seven different members of Chilean society. These were a schoolboy from a poor family in the district of Pedro Aguirre Cerda in Santiago; a female housekeeper from the district of La Florida in Santiago, again of limited means; a low-income taxi driver from Quillota, a small city some 120 km to the north west of Santiago; a low-paid mechanic from the district of Lo Espejo in Santiago; a restaurant manager from the city of Puerto Montt; the owner of a construction firm from Vitacura in Santiago, with a medium to high income; and an investor from the affluent district of Lo Barnechea in Santiago. The seven men and women depicted were of different ages, from different social strata, and from different parts of the country[1]. Conversations revolved around how each person depicted in the vignettes would be managing during the days and weeks after the initial uprising, whether or not that person would be a supporter of the protests, and whether their stances might change following 18/O.

Translated examples of the vignettes used in the study. The faces of those depicted have been masked for ethical reasons.
Translated examples of the vignettes used in the study. The faces of those depicted have been masked for ethical reasons. | Courtesy of the authors

Fear, insecurity and instability

The scale and violence of the protests, repression by the police and the military, the reaction of the demonstrators, and the human rights violations that followed were subjects that featured prominently in focus group conversations. Initially, participants focused on the violence of the protests themselves, and opinions were varied. Four contrasting points of view emerged: support for the movement but condemnation of protester violence; criticism that demands are hampered by the violence; justification of certain forms of violence; and complete toleration of the violence.

Then, rather than entering into a discussion of specific forms of violence – such as the erection of barricades or the repressive police response – the participants began to focus on how the lives of ordinary people had been made much more difficult by the events. The conversation focused on people’s insecurity and instability, in particular with regard to employment. These concerns are illustrated by the words of A.D., a housewife living in the Santiago district of San Ramón and a participant in a low-status focus group conducted three weeks after 18/O, who made specific reference to the mechanic depicted on one of the cards: “This gentleman who lives in Lo Espejo (...) is worried. Let’s say he has a car... he has to get to work (...): will there be any fuel? Will his workshop be set on fire by the mob?”[2] A.D. was at pains to stress that watching the events on the television news is very different from experiencing them at first hand, imagining the mechanic “lying awake at night” worrying that his workshop will be burned down and that he’ll find himself out of work.

This article studies the expression and perception of collective emotions following the outbreak of social upheaval,

The words fear, worry and shock appeared dozens of times in conversations between focus group participants. During the weeks immediately following 18/O, the issue of how hard things had been focused primarily on the general feeling of insecurity provoked by the violence. By contrast, participants spoke little of fear of punishment for protesting or of repression in general, a fact which suggests that few had actually been involved personally in the public demonstrations. An interesting item of note here is the subjective representation of fear produced when an event or situation is perceived by an individual as threatening. The characters portrayed in the vignettes provoked appreciation among group participants of people’s fear that their house or shop might be burned down, that their restaurant might be looted, that stones might be thrown at their taxi, or that their tools and machinery might be stolen. However, these worries respond to often exaggerated incidents rather than to a genuine threat.

Besides fear about security, concern regarding instability caused by the uprising was an even more prominent subject. This uncertainty and perceived vulnerability in the face of situations which make life difficult for people in different ways is not particularly associated with fear of things getting out of hand, although, according to sociologist Danilo Martuccelli (2020), the latter does serve to intensify such concerns. These may relate to job security, the threat of losing one’s job, of losing sales income or, for those who are self-employed, of losing clients.

To this are added longer travel times as a result of arson attacks on Santiago’s metro stations and, in Puerto Montt, of the earlier than usual closure of public transport each day. Furthermore, access to public services in general becomes increasingly restricted. As a result, people “have a rough time of it”; “you can’t get on with your normal life”, “you don’t know how to react”, and nobody knows what will happen “from one day to the next”. However, as the days went by and we conducted focus group after focus group, the subject of the early violence of 18/O and of the fear that this sparked began to feature less prominently in conversations. These feelings were intense but transitory, rising and falling as the conflict progressed and evolved.

The rage of the young people

One subject that was raised by all of our focus groups was the anger felt by the young people that led the uprising. The issue was prompted by a vignette depicting a schoolboy from the poor district of Pedro Aguirre Cerda in Santiago. According to participants, the youth feels no fear, only rage, an emotion that he expressed by dodging the metro fare alongside hundreds of other students on 18/O, street vandalism, participation in demonstrations, and going out “looking for trouble”. In short, “these kids have a lot of pent up anger”. Focus group participants also acknowledged the young man’s courage: “if a stone needs throwing at the cops, he’ll hurl it”. “What do I care about the cops?” says one participant, imitating the youth.

In the more affluent focus groups, some participants expressed outrage at the same young man’s behaviour, claiming that “all he wants is chaos”, “he has no respect”, and asking: “where is this all going to end?” Other participants defended the student, maintaining that he has two sides to him, being both a quiet young man and a troublemaker. They argue that he throws stones not for the fun of it, but in a fight for equality; that “they’re not setting Chile ablaze for nothing; they’re trying to break the system”.[3]

One surprising outcome of the focus group sessions conducted in the wake of 18/O was the repeated appearance in conversation of the word pueblo

Older people in the groups were surprised to find themselves confronting arguments such as “seriously, sir, if we weren’t doing this, if we weren’t smashing windows, nobody would listen to us”. They also venture suggestions as to the causes of the young man’s anger: he has seen what life is like for people who have had more opportunity to achieve the things he wants; it is an anger that has built up over the course of his school years, driven by his family’s money troubles. It is anger at the government and anger in general – “at everything that is happening” and, especially since 18/O, anger at “the behaviour of the police”.

This points to a generational and class difference in the collective emotions analysed: older people and the well-to-do suffer fear associated with the insecurity and instability caused by 18/O, while the younger generation feel anger at the system. From a psychological point of view, repression of expressions of anger and aggression towards the establishment provoke fear and thus tolerance of the power structure. However, this situation is altered by the emergence of collective anger – the expression of a loss of acceptance of the system and a decline in its perceived legitimacy (Flam, 2007). Older focus group participants face two new collective emotions: their own fear at the uprising, and their perception of the anger expressed by young people, and this provokes a sharp and uncomfortable departure from what had been their comfort zone prior to 18/O. According to C.P., a cook from the district of La Florida in Santiago, “one is in a state of confusion; one doesn’t know what to think or how to react”.

The emotional liberation of the older people

A universally accepted fact among focus group participants is that the popular uprising was sparked by young people who were then “joined by others”. They reason from an adult perspective that “they stood up on behalf of a lot of people”; “if the students hadn’t taken to the streets, the people wouldn’t have protested” – “they got the whole country behind the movement”. However, if the inequalities had been there all along yet had failed to provoke such an intense and large-scale reaction as that which occurred on 18/O, the role played by young people in this escalation remains to be explained. In other words, why did 18/O spread to older people? We suggest that the spirited and forthright action of students and young people helped members of the older generation to overcome the latent fear engendered by Chile’s recent history, associated in particular with authoritarianism and the increased neoliberal threat of dismissal by employers.

The role of fear as a powerful force in the lives of individuals, as an emotion that goes beyond the rational, was introduced by Freud. According to Weber, one of the founders of sociology, fear is inherent to social domination, along with justification of established power. Fear is also fundamental to people’s acceptance of inequality.

Without prompting, in each of the nine focus groups, the conversation moved from the present to the past, to explore the fear that existed among older people prior to the uprising, and contrasting this with what happened after 18/O. The change is expressed by H.C., a dried fruit merchant from Puerto Montt, in relation to the vignette depicting the housekeeper: “This lady has worked all her life (...) She’s been paid a certain amount of money[4]; good, accepted, great. But, no! After the uprising, something went click; now (…) if she says that her work is worth more, then it’s worth more!” The uprising worked as an emotional trigger: a “click” – an effect that sociologists have identified within social crises whereby a certain event serves to reveal, abruptly, that the world is not as everyone thought.

Focus group members expressed that, prior to the uprising, there was “resignation” and “conformity” motivated by fear. People accepted that “that’s life” and “that’s just the way it is”, doing nothing more than complaining, “muttering” and going about their business “like zombies”. Taken aback by the students’ apparent lack of fear and their untempered anger towards the status quo, observers branded the resignation that had prevailed prior to the uprising as obsolete. Participants expressed a feeling of liberation from the fear that had controlled them, acknowledging a new view of resignation as a negative emotion that leads only to passivity. The very act of putting these emotions into words led group members to feel that a tremendous weight had been lifted off, and some were even moved to tears.

The idea that during the uprising the investor is having just as a hard a time of it as the rest of the Chilean people is the subject of overwhelming doubt

In the lower echelons of society too there was renewed courage and decisiveness in tackling problems: “you feel braver knowing you have [the] support” of a larger movement, and there is growing feeling that “we’re making changes by burning [barricades, metro stations etc.]”. By contrast with the period prior to the uprising, anger is now seen as a valid means of addressing a challenging situation. According to one participant, “those guys have taught us that politeness is not always the best way”, while another suggested that the lower-class characters depicted in the vignettes now “feel able to face the issue head on”. This crucial change is attributed to the uprising and to the action of young people even by focus group participants from the upper-middle social strata, who express a more distant view of the protests. A collective change of this kind is defined by Flam (2007) as an “emotional liberation”, where individuals abandon their loyalties and other positive feelings towards the institutions and organisations with which they had previously identified, and this break leads to a search for new ties and perspectives on reality.

The emotional liberation sparked by the uprising presented an opportunity to reflect on the causes of resignation prior to 18/O, and this led to many conversations within our focus groups. According to the participants, in the past there was an ingrained tendency to reserve opinion, motivated by fear of expression. Today, “the same old injustices have resurfaced” and people are more willing to share their thoughts. There was also a fear that complaints would lead to dismissal, leading people to “just accept what they were paid”.

Another financial point raised by our groups was the overriding belief in the hopelessness of attempts to oppose the status quo, of fighting for a better salary or higher pension, prompting resigned acceptance of what was given. By comparison, today people perceive themselves to be “in a stronger position” to demand fair and commensurate remuneration.

One of the points most frequently raised in relation to attitudes of resignation prior to the uprising was the residual fear that has hung over the population since the days of dictatorship. In 1973, General Augusto Pinochet overthrew the democratically elected socialist government of Salvador Allende, seizing power by means of a United States-backed coup d’état. The ensuing 17-year dictatorship saw the torture, murder and disappearance of many thousands of Chileans, and over a million people were forced to flee into exile. Those who lived through the period were left traumatised by daily brutality meted out by the military and the secret police: “to this day, those of us over forty live in terrible fear of soldiers”.

The memory of the coup and the long-forgotten fear that went with it were rekindled by the events of 18/O which, for some people, were terrifying: the fires, the police repression and the military presence on the streets rose in the minds of the population like the ghosts of 1973. More than this, the personal, familial and social experiences of the dictatorship – of “putting up with it” and of “letting them walk all over you” – endured over time in the form of fear and internalised oppression. The dictatorship not only bred obedience through pure and direct repressive coercion, but left behind it a willingness to consent to and accept even that which is iniquitous (Araujo, 2016), and those focus group participants who had lived through it confessed to feeling the re-emergence of such an atmosphere following 18/O. Older participants compared the legacy of the dictatorship to the attitudes of young people who, for example, ignored the curfew imposed as part of the state of emergency that was declared in response to the uprising.

Collective confrontation of the fears of the past and an understanding of the reasons for their presence in everyday life may reduce the likelihood of their resurgence in the future. Emotional liberation also encourages greater reflexivity.

Suspicion...

The collective emotional liberation that we have described would be incomplete without mentioning distrust as a factor in the popular uprising. There is a general consensus that distrust of institutions lay at the heart of the crisis. Public opinion surveys such as CEP measure trust in institutions and the level of approval (or disapproval) of political actors. However, CEP addressed hope as a relevant emotion following 18/O but neglected to ask about the intense suspicion prompted by the uprising. The unrest marked a total collapse of trust in institutions, whose reputations were already in tatters following revelations of collusion in the commercial sector and scandals within the Church, political parties, the armed forces and the police. Their members, protected until then by their employers, became the subject of deep suspicion.

Focus groups involving the same people had been conducted in Santiago prior to the uprising, and a comparison of the two phases revealed an intensification of negative sentiment towards the vignette depicting the investor. Participants expressed broad suspicion towards this representative of the economic elite in the form of conjecture based on a variety of issues.

The idea that during the uprising the investor is having just as a hard a time of it as the rest of the Chilean people is the subject of overwhelming doubt. Instead, the dominant opinion is that this individual would be completely unaffected due to his isolation from the rest: living in a bubble, he is blissfully unaware of what is happening to people that live in the more working-class parts of the city. Adopting a simplistic view, Santiago can be roughly divided into the wealthier districts which lie towards the mountains to the east, and the poorer districts to the west. This division is commonly represented by Plaza Italia, an iconic open space on the border between affluent Providencia and bustling downtown Santiago, and the traditional epicentre of demonstrations and other protest activity, commonly referred to since 18/O as Dignity Square. More prosperous citizens, in this case represented by the investor, often refer disparagingly to their less well-off counterparts as “Plaza Italia and below”. The general belief is that the investor just wants to get on with his life, and that he is likely planning or enjoying a holiday abroad, unconcerned by the situation in his home country.

According to participants, the schoolboy from the poor district of Pedro Aguirre Cerda in Santiago feels no fear, only rage

Several participants even speculate that, given his superior socio-economic status, the investor tends to discriminate against other people, a surmise which provokes impassioned reactions. For example, J.S.M., who works as a product labeller in a factory in Puerto Montt, indignantly associates the investor vignette with events that occurred during a recent demonstration at a shopping centre in the upper-class district of La Dehesa in Santiago: “Just like that gentleman was saying the other day: calling people rotos (...) for banging their pots and pans (...). A load of ruffians invading his territory”. The act of banging pots and pans, known as a cacerolazo, has for decades been a commonplace form of protest in Chile, and the gentleman in question had denounced the presence of rowdy protesters in a part of the city where, as far as he was concerned, people of their ilk had no right to be.

Assumptions that this individual would be entirely unconcerned about the uprising is also based on the question of economic resources. He already has plenty of money, and a temporary slump in his earnings will affect him little, unlike the majority of the population of the country. People generally consider that he would be more concerned about his own business affairs than about the national minimum wage or the quality of healthcare and education available to the rest of the population. Y.M., a cleaner in Puerto Montt, imagines what the investor may be saying in private: “Let them protest! My wallet’s nice and thick so what do I care?”

Participants presume that his financial position allows him to remain calm and unaffected by the uncertainty associated with the uprising, unlike other Chileans. If necessary, he can move his capital elsewhere: “he’ll take his pot to another company”. Given his presumed position of influence, he even enjoys a direct line of communication with those who wield political power, including, of course, president Piñera: “hey, Sebastián, what’s going to happen here?” If the situation shows no sign of calming down, he could even consider leaving Chile: “I’m off! Seeya!”

Suspicion concerning the repressive action of the police and the authorities is an important issue, but distrust of the economic elite is even more widespread, pervading all of the social strata represented by our focus groups. Reflections are emotionally charged and even mocking, regardless of the general lack of information available concerning the illusive and untouchable Chilean elite.

...and hope

The negativity of suspicion vocalised by our participants contrasts hearteningly with expectations of change, and this positive perspective of the future is expressed in many and diverse ways by participants and their frequent use of the word “hope”. On one hand we observed generic aspirations relating to higher motives, often referred to as “the cause”: dealing with injustices, bringing about major changes that had long been impossible, and generally striving for a better future. On the other, participants expressed more specific aspirations regarding wages and income, education, public transport and retirement. These many demands were raised without conflict or argument as to their viability, how they could be achieved, or the priority of each.

Multiple social demands have been expressed through political discourse, street demonstrations, graffiti, social media and television, but it is in the focus groups that we are able to observe not only what is being called for, but how it is articulated. Of course, there is considerable use of the plural: what has happened will be beneficial for all; it’s a struggle for the majority of people; for the people; for a great diversity of people. As our methodology used cards depicting real individuals, participants often spoke in the third person singular, using he or she to refer to one or other of the seven vignettes that represented the Chilean social strata, or ellos and ellas (the masculine and feminine forms of them in Spanish) in reference to more than one vignette at a time. It was particularly interesting to observe the ease with which many participants made the connection between the individual and the collective: “I’m fed up with being beaten up, and the same is happening across the country”; “she supports the protests because she knows what it means to sacrifice oneself for one’s family”; “if anything comes out of this, it’ll be good for me too”.

Older people and the well-to-do suffer fear associated with the insecurity and instability caused by 18/O, while the younger generation feel anger at the system

These drivers of hope imply a break from the past, from the time before the uprising when the ideology of individual merit ruled unchallenged. The notion of meritocracy is questioned in focus groups following 18/O, with one participant highlighting the inequitable mechanism that prevails, commenting: “I put in as much effort as he did (...) and nobody gave me a diploma”. As such, we observe a transition from the confirmed failure of the ideology of personal effort and individual merit to the need for collective redistribution of goods within society.

Distrust and suspicion towards those in power develop in parallel with hope based on the collective capacity to resolve the individual problems of every member of society. The latter gives meaning to a shared project which spurs on those who support “the cause”, however nebulous it may be, and we consider that this personal motivation is more intense among people from the lower social strata.

The popular uprising has provoked changes in collective sentiments, and this in turn has triggered personal reflection as to what it is that people hope for as individuals compared to more widely shared aspirations within society. A new phase of reflection regarding prospects for the future is opening up before those who support the uprising.

The return of “el pueblo”

One surprising outcome of the focus group sessions conducted in the wake of 18/O was the repeated appearance in conversation of the word pueblo. The term captures the notion of “the people” as an – often oppressed – group and has been widely used during times of political and social upheaval in Latin America as a call for unity and resistance in the face of adversity. El Pueblo Unido (literally “the people united”), the Chilean protest song which became the soundtrack to Salvador Allende’s peaceful road to democratic socialism, was again taken up by protesters during 18/O, calling for solidarity and determination in the fight against neoliberalism and the inequality on which it is based. Together with fear, suspicion and hope, one other important emotion began to make itself felt: that of shared social identity, a sentiment that had not emerged in our previous research. During a survey conducted in 2016 to study the way in which people classify themselves within Chilean society, very few people used the word pueblo (Mac-Clure, Barozet and Valenzuela, 2020)[5]. Few were willing to identify with the lower classes or el pueblo in a society dominated by a meritocratic ideology which denigrates or blames those of a lower socio-economic standing.

By contrast with the period prior to the uprising, anger is now seen as a valid means of addressing a challenging situation

However, claims of belonging to a group like el pueblo re-emerge under a certain set of conditions, such as those created by the social uprising. Since 18/O, the word crops up time and again in our focus groups, charged with positive moral connotations regarding the identity of those to whom the term is applied. Participants from the lower and lower-middle classes indicate that the taxi driver, the mechanic, and indeed anyone on a low wage are members of el pueblo, expressing a sense of collective belonging: “the same pueblo to which we belong; all of us are humble”. In a more general sense, however, the collective comprises the disgruntled, those who support “the cause”, and all those who are united in an effort to achieve “many other things”. As such, participants make reference to a broad group, a “we” or an “us”, a “whole country” who have come out to protest: “rich, poor and flaites” (a term commonly applied to, and indeed often celebrated by, lower-status individuals characterised in part by their ostentatious dress style), those from the upper-class districts of Vitacura and Providencia in Santiago, or simply those who join in the cacerolazos.

Thus, belonging to el pueblo or to a broad social group becomes an emotional and moral issue – a sense of identity that is far from meaningless and which is not limited to those who engage in public demonstrations. Participants reflect that this collective identity has come to include social strata which, prior to the events of 18/O would not have been considered part of el pueblo. This is the case with one of the vignette characters: the owner of a construction firm. Despite his monthly income of over $2,500,000 pesos (US$3,090 or £2,550), which previously would have put him in a higher social category, there is an overriding sentiment that he “supports the cause”, would have a close relationship with his employees, is a “hard-working person” who “came from nothing”, and “doesn’t earn that much” compared to the investor, the personification of the economic elite. However, participants from the upper-medium strata tend to question this character’s support for the protests. There is collective reflection as to the “upper” social limit of those who get behind the movement. An external or “objective” perspective suggests that within those notions of “us”, “we” and el pueblo lies a powerful multi-class identity.

In summary, this focus group-based study found that, thanks to the October uprising in Chile, past fears have been left behind and the people have begun to reflect more freely on the social and economic reality of the country, albeit under the shadow of enduring concern as to what the future will bring. The uprising triggered an emotional liberation of our participants, which has led to more open reflection in general. This suggests that the potential for change in Chilean society will, from now on, depend on learning and listening to the arguments, ideas and sentiments of all, including people from different socio-economic and generational groups, and, in particular, those in a less privileged position.

Notes and references:

Araujo, Kathya (2016). El miedo a los subordinados. Santiago: LOM.

Flam, Helena (2007). Emotions’ map: A research agenda. In Flam, Helena and Debra King. Emotions and social movements. New York, NY: Routledge, 29-50.

Freud, Sigmund (1989 [1923]). The Ego and the Id. TACD Journal, 17:1, 5-22.

Mac-Clure, Oscar; Barozet, Emmanuelle and Valenzuela, Ana María (2020). Naming oneself in the social mirror: A vignette-based survey. Current Sociology. (Forthcoming)

Mac-Clure, Oscar; Barozet, Emmanuelle; Ayala, Constanza; Moya, Cristóbal; Valenzuela, Ana María (2019). Encontrar la posición de uno mismo en la sociedad: una encuesta basada en viñetas. Revista Brasileira de Ciências Sociais. Vol. 34, n° 99, 1-28.

Martuccelli, Danilo (2020). El largo octubre chileno. Bitácora sociológica. In Araujo, Kathya (Ed.). Hilos tensados: para leer el octubre chileno. Santiago: Editorial Usach, 369-476.

Weber, Max (1964 [1922]). Economy and Society. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.

[1] Further details regarding the research methodology can be found in Mac-Clure, Barozet, Ayala, Moya and Valenzuela (2019).

[2] Quotations from focus group participants have been translated freely while ensuring that the speaker’s original meaning is maintained.

[3] In its survey, the CEP does not distinguish between anger at the destruction and young people’s rage against the status quo, despite the opposing orientations of these two emotions.

[4] H.C. is referring here to the housekeeper’s monthly income of between $200,000 and $300,000 Chilean pesos (US$250–370 or £200–300).

[5] Only five interviewees out of a random sample of 1,982 used the word pueblo or gente de pueblo (the common people).


This work was supported by the Chilean National Research and Development Agency (ANID) through FONDECYT Regular Project 1190436 (National Fund for Scientific and Technological Development) and CONICYT / FONDAP Project 15130009 (National Commission for Scientific and Technological Research / Fund for Research Centres of Excellence in Priority Areas).


This article was originally published in Spanish by CIPER and republished with permission. Read the original here.

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