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Today in Labour History

1 November 1921
La Patagonia Rebelde, Héctor Olivera (Argentina, 1974)
Source: Wikimedia Commons

Rebel Patagonia

Anarchism and syndicalism were the dominant strain in the Argentinian labour movement of the early 20th century. A strike of rural workers in Patagonia led by the Spanish anarchist Antonio Soto  started on 1 November 1921. Many strikers were Chileans who had come to Patagonia to escape the severe repression of the Chilean authorities after their strike in southern Chile, 1920. Operations in Argentina ended even more disastrously. as the Argentinian army killed approximately 1500 workers and jailed hundreds as Bolsheviks or anarchists.

Osvaldo Bayer wrote a four volume novel on the events, Los Vengadores de la Patagonia Trágica (The Avengers of Tragic Patagonia', 1972-1974). The film version of his book Rebelde Patagonia won the Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival in 1974.

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