A key controversial issue in Uruguay has been the nation’s inability to achieve a lasting reconciliation regarding human rights violations after a twelve year dictatorship. While other scholars have identified factors that caused the resurgence of the demand for human rights prosecutions, I focus on the nation’s eventual failure to do so. This, I argue, is a result of the executive, the civil society and the politicization of human rights violations. I offer a critical reading on transitional justice and the justice cascade as explanatory frameworks to understand how societies confront their authoritarian past. Although these concepts both seem relevant, they are inadequate in the Uruguayan context. The project was undertaken using a historical research methodology focusing on archival research. I conclude that Uruguay has not experienced a unique water-shed moment because the military has never been fully discredited. This has hindered the process to reach an enduring reconciliation.
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Thesis advisor: Dawson, Alexander
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