To understand the social uprising that occurred in Colombia starting on the day of the national strike, April 28, 2021, particularly in the city of Santiago de Cali, this article examines three postulates: (1) Cali is an ethnicized/racialized and young city; (2) Colombia has one of the highest rates of extreme poverty, inequality, and violence on the continent; (3) being both Black and poor is not exactly a coincidence. Although there are many reasons behind the protests in Colombia, this article focuses on the structural and everyday expressions of racism that lead to a multiplicity of oppressions that fall on the bodies of racialized men and women in a city with an intensely racist imaginary. In the strike, these people, young people without a future, said enough is enough and strengthened their dignity through struggle.
Social Uprising, Racism, and Resistance in Cali’s National Strike
Betty Ruth Lozano Lerma is a university professor with a PhD in Latin American cultural studies from the UASB in Quito and a master’s in political philosophy and sociology from the University of Valle, Cali, who is director of the Research Department of the Universidad Bautista. She is a Black decolonial and popular feminist activist, committed to critical intellectual work and social struggles. Her research focuses on Black racialized women in the Colombian Pacific, based on a perspective of gender and ethnicity, connected with religion, reparations, spirituality, social movements, and political transformations.
Betty Ruth Lozano Lerma; Social Uprising, Racism, and Resistance in Cali’s National Strike. South Atlantic Quarterly 1 April 2022; 121 (2): 425–434. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00382876-9663730
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