The El Mozote Massacre: Human Rights and Global Implications Revised and Expanded Edition

The El Mozote Massacre: Human Rights and Global Implications Revised and Expanded Edition

by Leigh Binford


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In 1981, more than a thousand civilians around El Mozote, El Salvador, were slaughtered by the country’s U.S.-trained army. The story was covered—and soon forgotten—by the international news media. In the first edition of The El Mozote Massacre, anthropologist Leigh Binford successfully restores a social identity to the massacre victims through his dissection of Third World human rights reporting and a rich ethnographic and personal account of El Mozote–area residents prior to the massacre.

Almost two decades later, the consequences of the massacre continue to reverberate through the country’s legal and socioeconomic systems. The El Mozote Massacre, 2nd Edition brings together new evidence to address reconstruction, historical memory, and human rights issues resulting from what may be the largest massacre in modern Latin American history.

With a multitude of additions, including three new chapters, an extended chronology, discussion of the hearing and ruling of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in 2012, and evidence gathered throughout half a dozen field trips made by the author, Binford presents a current perspective on the effects of this tragic moment in history. Thanks to geographically expanded fieldwork, Binford offers critical discussion of postwar social, economic, religious, and social justice in El Mozote, and adds important new regional, national, and global contexts.

The El Mozote Massacre, 2nd Edition maintains the crucial presence of the massacre in human rights discussions for El Salvador, Latin America, and the world.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780816532162
Publisher: University of Arizona Press
Publication date: 03/03/2016
Edition description: Revised
Pages: 400
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Leigh Binford is a professor of sociology and anthropology at the College of Staten Island and a member of the CUNY graduate faculty. His work has been published in journals such as Journal of Peasant Studies, Anthropologica, and Third World Quarterly.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations ix

Preface to the Revised Edition xi

Acknowledgments xv

List of Abbreviations xix

Introduction: Reducing Cultural Distance in Human Rights Reporting 3

1 The Massacre 15

2 The Eye of the Oligarchy 34

3 The U.S. Cover-Up 58

4 The Nascent Community of El Mozote 80

5 The Politics of Repression and Survival in Northern Morazán 103

6 Investigation and Judgment 132

7 A Reformed Military? 157

8 History and Memory 188

9 Representation, Witness, and Silence 212

10 The Struggle for Justice 238

11 Nunca Más!: El Mozote, Human Rights, and Transitional Justice 257

Chronology 273

Notes 283

References 339

Index 367

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