After my trip to South Africa and visiting the home of Nelson Mandela, I learned how peace can prevent so many lives from being lost in revolution. Reconciling with diverse difference is vital to sustaining a future for all.
Peace throughout revolutions has always been a debatable ideology. When traveling to Villa de Salvador, I visited the gravesite of the late Maria Elena Moyano, a community organizer, peaceful revolutionary and a symbol of feminine women of color uprising. It should be no question that she was not a threat to the Shining Path Maoist Communist Party Organization. Unfortunately, this was not the case. She, too had became a mardre of what artist Jorge Miyagui terms as “Joyful Rebellion.” She had been brutally murdered in front of her husband and children; her body dismembered and destroyed by explosives. Even after her death, her grave was bombed and now existing grave is tampered with as well.
When first reading about her and listening to her powerful speeches in the beginning of my trip, I couldn’t help but feel empowered and inspired by such an amazing woman. She symbolized the power of all the feminine aspect of revolution that has been oppressed for so long by patriarchy, colonization and oppression. Being a person focused on revolution through peace, the framework challenged destruction, exclusion, resistance and violence. She not only was a mother for her children but her community, embodying her socialist ideologies of community responsibility, nurturing, reproduction and healing. These maternal and matriarchal aspects threatened ‘masculinated’ ideologies of change and power. With that, she is powerful in ways that redistributed to those oppressed around her; women, children, mothers, racially underrepresented, etc.
I look for these voices and movements of revolution now in Peru, and I have found some.
On our first trip into a community, we visited children and new movements of nurturing the new generation.
Through education and building consciousness, the children of Cultura Viva Comunitaria con “El Quijote y su manchita,” have been creating visual forms of activism and education through mural art. They encourage peace and creativity in dreams and creating a new future in peace across nations.