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Sunday, March 11, 2018

Changes, we all need them

Por mayli2017

Prominent poets such as Gabriela Mistral and Pablo Neruda, winners of the Nobel Prize in 1945 and 1971 respectively, were exotic figures in South American society and at times were better valued abroad than in their own country. Mistral, who for years preferred to ignore the more sensual nature of his poetry and the intimate relationship he sustained with his personal secretary, the American Doris Danna, was an acid critic of Chilean society, however, is better known as a teacher and author of verses dedicated to childhood.

For his part, Neruda, a well-known Communist militant, was banished in life for his political ideas in the country, while enjoying enormous recognition in Europe. In the 70s and 80s and under the military regime, it was intended to cheat his figure of ideological commitment that had guided much of his life and work. Now Daniela Vega, from the cinema, intends to change that reality.

In a world where human prejudices and miseries far from diminishing increase considerably, in societies as conservative as the United States, Bolivia and Chile, will the Oscar award win the Chilean film "A fantastic woman to beat discrimination against a transgender woman? or that they approve a Gender Identity Law, which was discussed five years ago in the country?

This is a question that all Chilean media and social networks posed the night after the ceremony of the Academy of Hollywood, where the protagonist of the film, Daniela Vega, also became the first transgender actress to officiate as a presenter in its 90 years of history. It has generated in Chile a whole debate on the right of transgender people. Despite this, it is not the first time that international recognition addresses issues that place the most conservative sectors of Chilean society.The Hollywood Academy, in 2016, awarded him the Oscar in the category of best short film animated to "The Story of a Bear."

The 11-minute film shows the pain caused by the exile that the Chilean military regime assigned to tens of thousands of militants and supporters of Salvador Allende after the coup of 1973, including among them, the grandfather of its director, the filmmaker Gabriel Osorio.The short film forced the debate on a topic that many in Chile would like to avoid. To say of Osorio to BBC World when it was known what the Bear was about, many conservative people and sectors asked why they were talking about the dictatorship again, they questioned if they did not want to change the subject. However, he always thought about the fact that Americans make a new movie about the Second World War every year and nobody questions it.

Chile has good recent examples of artists who succeed abroad by convening social conventions, "A fantastic woman", beyond being a film about transgender identity in a country that constantly questions the legal rights of that community puts before our eyes a thematic that at some point should stop scandalizing.

In Chile, it often seems that the creators are better connected to the reality of the country than the media or politicians.Renowned Daniela Vega cannot use her name when entering the Santiago airport, which is illogical for many. The day of the Oscars all congratulated Daniela, however, now she has to cross the border with the name of another person, which gives us a lesson in dignity and professionalism to all. But it also makes us reflect.