Enraizado en la memoria chilena: El Estadio Nacional como escenario nacional
Haverford College. Department of Spanish
Place of Publication
The Manuel J. and Elisa P. Asensio Prize
Table of Contents
The National Stadium of Chile, constructed in 1938, sits in the southwest region of Santiago as part of an expansive sports center. The largest stadium in the country, throughout its life it has hosted a vast array of significant national and international events, including the 1962 World Cup and a biannual rival university soccer match. It has acquired a place of preeminence in the Chilean memory, symbolizing the pride and success of the country and its people at several points in its history. On September 11, 1973, a coup d’etat overthrew the socialist government of Salvador Allende, resulting in a violent dictatorship that lasted until 1990. During the first fifty-eight days of this regime the National Stadium was used as a center for detention and torture, with more than twenty thousand detainees passing through its gates. The Stadium came to be an international symbol of the dictatorship, meanwhile within Chile the symbolism of the esteemed coliseum was complicated in a dark and violent manner. In 2006 the Chilean artist Sebastian ErraZuriz planted a tree in the middle of the field of the Stadium in memory of the victims of the regime 33 years before. In a combination of my own experiences visiting the Stadium and analyzing existing studies on the space this project examines the multifaceted nature of the Stadium, as a national stage where memory and history have performed since its inauguration.