Tag: ETA

Joseba Zulaika returns to Itziar to talk about his classic Basque Violence

In June 22 Joseba Zulaika gave a talk in Itziar, his home town and the place of the ethnographic work for which he is best known, Basque Violence: Metaphor and Sacrament. Almost forty years ago, having concluded his fieldwork, Zulaika was asked to give a talk in Itziar and he said that this one, now that ETA is ended, felt like a repetition of that one—when he had to face his village neighbors and explain what he had “discovered” about the place.

Zulaika repeated his argument about the Homeric plot underlying “The Tragedy of Carlos”—the two “milk brothers” and close friends Martin and Carlos who later became political antagonists in the eyes of the community and when Carlos was killed by ETA Martin didn’t approve of it. Zulaika later applied the Homeric scheme to the painful history of ETA in Itziar—the plight of the hero who falls into a tragic error. The tragic error is really an error, yet it is the sort of error a good man would make. It is thus an act both free and conditioned. It is not forced upon him, but he makes it under conditions so adverse that we watch him with compassion. There could be many readings of Itziar’s events but Zulaika emphasized that, far beyond the current “terrorist” all encompassing discourse, only an ethnographic approach could make justice to the actual histories of the pople. Zulaika said that giving his talk in Itziar was unlike giving it anywhere else—because he was in the presence of the protagonists of his ethnography and this implied a “repetition” in the deeper sense that the presence of Martin and Carlos and the former ETA activists wasn’t just a memory of past events, but an affirmation of the present and future realities of Itziar in this post-ETA era.

The End of Arms Conflict in Basque Country: Seminar at the University of Liverpool

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The speakers of the seminar: “The End of Arms Conflict in Basque Country.” The Center’s Dr. Xabier Irujo is pictured second from the left (from Berria).

The University of Liverpool collaborated with the Etxepare Basque Institute in hosting a seminar on the end of arms conflict in Basque Country.  The seminar focused on the peace progress in Basque Countries after ETA (Basque indigenous separatist movement) ended its arm struggle and decided to pursue peaceful strategies in achieving independence for Basque country. Some of the prominent experts invited in the seminar were Dr. Xabier Irujo of the University of Nevada in the United States, Dr. Inigo Urrutia of the University of Basque country, Dr. Kevin Bean of the University of Liverpool in the United Kingdom, Amaia Agirrek from the Agirre Center, and Juan Jose Ibarretxe, the former president of the Basque country. Read Berria’s coverage of the event here http://www.berria.eus/albisteak/109443/euskal_gatazka_hizketagai_liverpoolen.htm (in Basque)