Unit 2

DW Unit 2 Freedom I-III Instructions

Student Handouts

DW Unit 2A Freedom of Speech I 2018 I. Freedom of Speech, Freedom of the Press

DW Unit 2A Freedom II 2018 Put a Spin on it: A Lexicon of Terror: Argentina and Legacies of Torture

DW Unit 2A Freedom III Censored and Exiled 2018

Voices for Freedom


Charly Garcia and his group Serú Girán sing about Argentine reality in Canción de Alicia en el país/Alice in Wonderland. They cleverly used metaphors from Alice in Wonderland to outwit censors.

“Si Se Calla el Cantor” by Facundo Cabral

“Si Se Calla el Cantor” by Mercedes Sosa

Si se calla el cantor calla la vida porque la vida, la vida misma es todo un canto si se calla el cantor, muere de espanto la esperanza, la luz y la alegría.

Si se calla el cantor se quedan solos los humildes gorriones de los diarios, los obreros del puerto se persignan quién habrá de luchar por su salario.

HABLADO ‘Que ha de ser de la vida si el que canta no levanta su voz en las tribunas por el que sufre,´por el que no hay ninguna razón que lo condene a andar sin manta’

Si se calla el cantor muere la rosa

de que sirve la rosa sin el canto debe el canto ser luz sobre los campos iluminando siempre a los de abajo.

Que no calle el cantor porque el silencio cobarde apaña la maldad que oprime, no saben los cantores de agachadas no callarán jamás de frente al crimén.

HABLADO ‘Que se levanten todas las banderas cuando el cantor se plante con su grito que mil guitarras desangren en la noche una inmortal canción al infinito’.

Si se calla el cantor . . . calla la vida.

If the singer is silenced, life stops

because life, life itselfis all a song

if the singer is silenced, from horror

dies hope, light and joy.

If the singer is silenced, alone remain the humble sparrows of the newspapers,

port workers make the sign of the cross (or cross themselves)

who will fight for their salaries?

CHORUS What is there for life to be if the one who sings

does not raise his voice in the stands

for the one who suffers, for the one for which

there is no ground to be condemned to be without a blanket

If the singer stops singing, dies the rose

what is the purpose of a rose without asong

the song should be a light over the fields

illuminating always those underneath.

Do not silence the singer, because silence cowardly protects the cruelty that oppresses the singers do not know of bowing down they will never keep silent in the face of a crime.

CHORUS Let all of the flags be raised

when the singer stands with his shout let one thousand guitars serenade into the night an immortal song to infinity.

If the singer is silenced… life stops.


Published on Nov 29, 2015 (26:00) Alicia Partnoy, a poet who survived Argentina’s “dirty war” of the 1970s, was one of thousands of “disappeared” sent to detention camps by the military
dictatorship. During three years of imprisonment, she was tortured and many of
her friends were killed. Expelled from Argentina in 1979, she came to the U.S.
as a political refugee.



41 years ago, the military coup took place.
When I posted this picture, the fourth trial against the genocide perpetrators
in my hometown Bahía Blanca was starting. This image, from the documentary
La escuelita by Rodrigo Caprotti shows me walking into the area where The Little
School was built, superimposed with the layout of the place that I made as evidence
that I had been held in the place the military leveled to destroy
precisely that evidence. ~ Alicia Partnoy
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