Latin American Studies Chile's Struggle for Independence
by
Juan Luis Ossa
  • LAST REVIEWED: 05 May 2017
  • LAST MODIFIED: 27 March 2014
  • DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199766581-0153

Introduction

Chile’s struggle for independence is known as the period in which Chile became a separate country from Spain. It usually covers the years 1808–1830, and it is much related to events in Europe and in other regions of South America, especially Peru and the area of the Río de la Plata. As in most parts of the American continent, the French invasion of Spain and the abdication of Fernando VII in 1808 provoked a political crisis in Chile that began to be resolved when, after ousting governor Francisco García Carrasco, the Santiago elites created an administrative junta on 18 September 1810 that claimed to govern the territory on behalf of the imprisoned king but declared its autonomy from the political bodies in Spain. Although the change of government in Chile was less violent and less radical than elsewhere, differences between political factions aiming to control the juntista movement in the period 1811–1812 provoked frictions between supporters of José Miguel Carrera (military chief of Santiago) and followers of Juan Martínez de Rozas and Bernardo O’Higgins (leaders of Concepción). But when the Peruvian viceroy, José Fernando de Abascal, decided to intervene militarily in Chile in late 1812, in order to stop the radicalism of the Chilean autonomists, differences between Carrera and O’Higgins subsided and gave way to a conflict between Chilean-formed armies representing the interests and goals of insurgents and royalists. The counterrevolutionary program envisioned by the absolutists in Spain and supported in Spanish America by officials like Abascal triumphed in late 1814, thus forcing the Chilean insurgents to escape to the province of Cuyo, on the other side of the Cordillera. In Mendoza, Bernardo O’Higgins sealed an alliance with José de San Martín and the so-called Logia Lautaro to re-conquer Chile and to attempt an attack on Lima, the center of the counterrevolution. The Central Valley of Chile was re-conquered from the royalists in April 1818 in the battle of Maipú, an event comparable in importance to the declaration of Chilean Independence on 12 February 1818. However, the south of the country remained in the hands of the royalists until well into the 1820s. San Martín’s Army of Peru, meanwhile, set sail from Chile in mid-1820. Formed by men from the Army of the Andes and the Army of Chile, they secured Peru’s Independence in July 1821, although the military conflict lasted until December 1824, when the battle of Ayacucho determined the fate of all of Spanish South America. This war brought about two important consequences for Chile: first, it allowed the military to become the most powerful political figures of the period; second, it provoked a series of public debates on whether the new Spanish American states should adopt a republican form of government or follow the European monarchical example. Beyond that period, discussions focused on the role of the state and individuals in shaping the new republic.

General Overviews

Chile’s 19th-century historiographical tradition of independence was both nationalistic and apologetic of the role played by the military and by men of letters who, according to the classic view, led the revolution to its “glorious” conclusion. Amunátegui and Amunátegui 1912, Barros Arana 1863, and Vicuña Mackenna 1972 display the anti-Spanish sentiment expressed in most works of the generation of scholars who began to write or became recognized in the 1860s. In the 20th century, this anti-Spanish approach was somewhat moderated, as the study of Eyzaguirre 1957 proves. Although the author Eyzaguirre did not dedicate an entire book to the full period of independence, his work sheds light on the influence of Spanish institutions on Chile’s republican system, stressing the importance of order to attain political stability. The contributions of Eyzaguirre 1957 are contested by liberal historians like Collier 1967, Heise 1978, and Jocelyn-Holt 1992, which agree that it was liberty rather than order that provided Chile with a successful political organization after Independence. In the 1990s and 2000s, meanwhile, this period was approached from a less political perspective and, in keeping with the historical schools of the time, focuses on the social forces. Salazar 2005 introduces common soldiers, slaves, inquilinos, and artisans in the general narrative of independence. In so doing, this work claims that independence was not a revolution—at least not in the sense that the French Revolution was—but simply a movement to strengthen the privileged position of the elites. In more recent years, however, political studies have once again become popular among historians. The current works on independence combine general narratives with the idea that the building of Chile’s national state was the starting, not the departing, point of independence. Thus, independence is viewed from a non-inevitable perspective and as the result of unexpected events in the context of a “revolutionary civil war.”

  • Amunátegui, Miguel Luis, and Amunátegui Gregorio Víctor. La reconquista Española. Santiago, Chile: Imprenta Litografía y Encuadernación Barcelona, 1912.

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    This book claims that the so-called “Spanish Reconquista” (1814–1817) was led by despotic and dehumanized military officers whose aim was to turn the clock back to the status quo ante 1810. Its authors popularized the interpretation that the counterrevolutionary (a concept they did not use) regime was the bloodiest period of the civil war.

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    • Barros Arana, Diego. Historia jeneral de la independencia de Chile. Santiago, Chile: Librería de Pedro Yuste, 1863.

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      This is one of first general histories published of Chile’s struggle for independence. Barros Arana narrates the principal events of the revolution, including a series of documentos justificativos that help the modern historian to know what contemporaries wrote and thought of the process they were going through. It is interesting that Barros Arana had begun his work in 1807 (i.e., when the first repercussions of the British invasion of Buenos Aires were felt in Chile) instead of the more common starting point of 1808.

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      • Collier, Simon. Ideas and Politics of Chilean Independence, 1808–1833. London: Cambridge University Press, 1967.

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        Built upon an admirable amount of primary sources, Simon Collier’s work claims that the revolution was a long-term process that ended up creating a completely new political system. Collier traced the evolution in Chile of fundamental political concepts, such as social contract, popular sovereignty, representative government, and constitutionalism, thus trying to demonstrate that liberalism was the predominant ideology of the period.

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        • Eyzaguirre, Jaime. Ideario y ruta de la emancipación Chilena. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1957.

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          This book recounts the origins of Chile’s drive for home rule, arguing that the formation of Santiago’s Junta in 1810 was based on the Spanish Scholastic argument that, in the absence of a king, power should return to the people. According to Eyzaguirre, the concepts of freedom, limitation of royal power, and the participation of the people [pueblo] in politics were all principles rooted in the Spanish ideological tradition.

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          • Heise, Julio. Años de formación y aprendizaje político. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1978.

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            Heise challenges the classic view that the decade of the 1820s in Chile was a period of anarchy and political chaos. He argues that it was during those years of “political learning and formation” that Chileans consolidated a republican order through the Constitution of 1828. This document served, according to Heise, as the basis for the Constitution of 1833 (which lasted until 1925).

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            • Jocelyn-Holt, Alfredo. La independencia de Chile. Tradición, modernización y mito. Madrid: Editorial Mapfre, 1992.

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              Jocelyn-Holts’s main contribution refers to the late colonial period. In his view, the Bourbon reforms did not obliterate the Creole elites, but rather empowered their position within the imperial system. This explains why the war that began in 1813 did not respond to a conflict of national liberation (Spain against Chile), as well as why independence was only one, and not necessarily the most popular, political option until well into de 1810s.

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              • Salazar, Gabriel. Construcción de estado en Chile (1800–1837). Democracia de “los pueblos”: Militarismo ciudadano. golpismo oligárquico. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Sudamericana, 2005.

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                In this book, Gabriel Salazar argues that the political memory of Chile is filled with “statues and heroes,” an opinion that would explain why so little space has been dedicated to study the role of the people and the great masses. This, Salazar claims, has led to an interpretation that is not only apologetic of the figures who commanded the revolution, but that has also prevented the common citizens from having a “clear conscience of their sovereignty.”

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                • Vicuña Mackenna, Benjamín. La guerra a muerte. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Francisco de Aguirre, 1972.

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                  This is a very well researched work about a relatively unknown period of Chile’s struggle for independence: the War to the Death (1817–1823). Vicuña Mackenna reconstructs the lives and services of many soldiers and officers who, after the battle of Maipú, either escaped (that was the case of the royalists) or were sent by the Chilean state (that was the case of the revolutionaries) to the south of Chile to put an end to the military conflict.

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                  Primary Materials and Edited Collections

                  Since the 19th century, a series of printed primary materials and edited collections have been published to make the fundamental political writings of the revolutionary period more accessible to the general public. Of these works, the Colección de historiadores y de documentos relativos a la independencia de chile is the most valuable, as it gathers political, social, economic, and cultural documents that summarize the goals and actions of those who led the revolution. This collection does not contain every document on the independence period held by Chile’s Archivo Nacional, although it is undoubtedly the starting point for anyone interested in this period. The letters written and received, recorded in the Archivo de don Bernardo O’Higgins are another invaluable source, while Letelier 1889 contains the parliamentary discussions, from 1811 (the year when the Chilean Congress was created) until 1845. Also, Carrera Verdugo 1986, the personal diary of José Miguel Carrera and Feliú Cruz 1952 provide an insightful picture of the revolutionary army and the different political factions that were organized in the aftermath of the revolution. Fray Melchor Martínez 1964 is, in turn, a critical analysis of the autonomist movement. Martínez’s account is, in fact, one of the few printed primary sources that does not present an apologetic view of the revolutionaries.

                  • Academia Chilena de la Historia. Archivo de don Bernardo O’Higgins. Santiago, Chile: Imprenta Universitaria, 1946–2001.

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                    This is a multivolume work that gathers documentation of the life and government of Bernardo O’Higgins. Especially relevant are the documents that refer to the period when O’Higgins served as Supreme Director. The volumes of this publication contain public and private documents written by, and sent to, O’Higgins and some of his closer advisors and allies.

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                    • Carrera Verdugo, José Miguel. Diario del Brigadier General D. José Miguel Carrera Verdugo. Santiago, Chile: Academia de Historia Militar, 1986.

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                      This Diario is an essential source to understand the life and work of José Miguel Carrera, one of the main protagonists of Chile’s struggle for independence. Carrera presents his interpretation of the events that led him and his brothers to have control of the political and military situation of the Central Valley during the period 1811–1814. He also stresses the differences between his and O’Higgins’ political project, being very critical of the role played by San Martín and the Logia Lautaro from 1815 on.

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                      • Feliú Cruz, Manuel. Colección de antiguos periódicos Chilenos. Santiago, Chile: Ediciones de la Biblioteca Nacional, 1952.

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                        This is an impressive collection of the first Chilean periodicals published during Chile’s struggle for Independence. It covers the period 1810–1825, and among its most important periodicals we find El Argos de Chile, El Duende, El Sol de Chile, Cartas Pehuenches and El Telégrafo. These periodicals were published not so much to inform the public of daily events, but rather they were political manifiestos that gathered the political and philosophical opinions of Chile’s men of letters.

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                        • Fray Melchor Martínez. Memoria histórica sobre la revolución de Chile. Santiago, Chile: Editorial de la Biblioteca Nacional, 1964.

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                          This Memoria is the most complete royalist source of the first years of the revolution. Martínez mixes his narrative with documentation of the epoch. His view is critical of the radical path taken by the revolutionaries from 1810 onwards; he also describes the role of the Franciscans in this process, emphasizing the loyalty of the order to the imprisoned king and the authorities in Lima.

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                          • Letelier, Valentín, ed. Sesiones de los Cuerpos Legislativos de la Republica de Chile. Santiago, Chile: Imprenta Cervantes, 1889.

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                            Another invaluable source, the Sesiones de los cuerpos legislativos gather the parliamentary discussions of the period 1811–1845. The volumes include, among many other subjects, lists of deputies and senators, political projects developed by members of parliament, and discussions regarding the political system Chile should adopt in the aftermath of the revolution.

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                            • Matta Vial, Enrique, and Guillermo Feliú Cruz, eds. Colección de historiadores y de documentos relativos a la independencia de Chile. Santiago: Biblioteca Nacional de Chile, 1900–1966.

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                              The Colección de historiadores y de documentos relativos a la independencia de Chile is the most valuable printed primary source of this period, as it gathers political, social, economic, and cultural documents that summarize the goals and actions of those who led the revolution.

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                              • Salas, Manuel de. Escritos de don Manuel de Salas y documentos relativos a él y a su familia. Santiago, Chile: Imprenta, Litografía y Encuadernación Barcelona, 1910–1914.

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                                Manuel de Salas was one of Chile’s most prominent men of letters of the last decades of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th. He was an ilustrado, who read widely on politics, philosophy, and history, being as well the leader of a series of emblematic projects in education, public charity, and military matters. His writings include educational, economic, and political issues.

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                                • Stuven, Ana María, and Cid Gabriel. Debates Republicanos en Chile. Siglo XIX. Santiago, Chile: Ediciones Universidad Diego Portales, 2012.

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                                  Published in 2012, this book gathers some of the most important documents of the years 1808–1851. Each section of the book—Sovereignty, Representation, Republic, Federalism, and Order—is accompanied by an introduction written by Stuven and Cid, whose main thesis is that the fall of the Spanish monarchy in 1808 provoked in Chile an untold number of publications and polemics that brought about the emergence of modernity.

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                                  Chile at the End of the 18th Century

                                  Chile at the 18th century has generally been seen from two, different perspectives. The most accepted argues that the fiscal and political reforms introduced by the Bourbons after the Seven Years War were planned to recover the power allegedly lost to the colonials during the Habsburg regime. In the Chilean case, works like Amunátegui 1911 claim that the Creoles were alienated by Madrid’s decision to give bureaucratic responsibilities to Spanish-born officials instead of Spanish Americans, as well as by the economic monopoly that forced Chilean merchants to trade only with imperial ports. Consequently, Creoles raised their arms in the 1810s to combat the political and economic absolutism of the metropolis. However, this perspective has been challenged. Barbier 1972 and Barbier 1980, studies on Bourbon Chile prove that the Creole elites were under no circumstance weakened by the reforms, but rather were empowered by them. This approach is shared in Ossa 2010, a study of 18th-century Chile. Ossa 2010 also demonstrates that, by 1810, there were many peninsulares who were closer to Chile than to Spain and that there were many Creoles who did not approve the juntista movement. Finally, Meza Villalobos 1956, on the years 1806–1810, gives a detailed account of the political events that led to the substitution of Governor García Carrasco in mid-1810.

                                  • Alemparte, Julio. El Cabildo en Chile colonial. Orígenes municipales de las repúblicas hispanoamericanas. Santiago, Chile: Ediciones Andrés Bello, 1966.

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                                    Alemparte’s hypothesis is that the town councils (Cabildos) that were created in Spanish America helped the local inhabitants to counterbalance the power of the metropolis. Alemparte argues that Spanish Americans inherited the modus operandi of the town councils originated in Castile and which were quite autonomous from the crown. It is not surprising, therefore, that the Spanish American Cabildos led the revolutionary process after 1810.

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                                    • Amunátegui, Miguel Luis. La Crónica de 1810. Santiago, Chile: Imprenta de la República de Jacinto Núñez, 1911.

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                                      The introduction of this fundamental work makes reference to the factors that, according to Amunátegui, led to the 1810 revolution. In his view, the main cause that explains Chile’s revolution is the discontent of the Creoles with the allegedly despotic laws introduced by the metropolis in the second half of the 18th century.

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                                      • Barbier, Jacques. “Elite and Cadres in Bourbon Chile.” Hispanic American Historical Review 52.3 (1972): 416–435.

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                                        This article argues that the Bourbon reforms created new administrative posts that, in general, were sought by the local elites. Furthermore, those officials who were sent from Spain tended to marry into Creole families, which enabled the Chilean elites to co-opt the administration of the country.

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                                        • Barbier, Jacques. Reform and Politics in Bourbon Chile, 1755–1796. Ottawa, ON: University Ottawa Press, 1980.

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                                          In this study, Barbier proves that, despite the Bourbons’ aim to re-conquer the colonial territory by sending Spanish-born bureaucrats to occupy the most important administrative posts, the Creole elites were empowered by the reforms introduced by Charles III and Charles IV. Although governors and high-ranked military officers were, in general, Spanish born, the Cabildos, the Church, and the Audiencia were progressively officered by Chilean born.

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                                          • Meza Villalobos, Néstor. La actividad política del Reino de Chile entre 1806 y 1810. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1956.

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                                            Néstor Meza Villalobos’ book on the years 1806–1810 gives a detailed account of the political events that led to the substitution of Governor García Carrasco in mid-1810. Meza’s narrative is useful to understand the series of maneuvers and complots led by the Santiago elites to oust García Carrasco. However, this book also shows the internal disputes between the different factions of the ruling classes.

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                                            • Ossa, Santa Cruz Juan Luis. “La criollización de un ejército periférico. Chile, 1768–1810.” Historia II.43 (July–December 2010): 413–448. Santiago: Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.

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                                              This article analyzes the functioning of Chile’s colonial army at the end of the 18th century. Its aim is to show that the regular army and the militias were preferentially formed by people born, or with a strong connection to, South America. In so doing, the author questions that the Bourbon reforms had re-conquered the Chilean administration through the sending of peninsular bureaucrats.

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                                              • Villalobos, Sergio. Tradición y Reforma en 1810. Santiago: Ediciones de la Universidad de Chile, 1961.

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                                                Tradición y Reforma aims to prove that, at the turn of the 18th and 19th century, the Chilean elites were indistinctively traditional and reformist. Villalobos correctly argues that the members of the Santiago Junta did not seek to declare independence from Spain. However, he also claims that the movement that led to the creation of an autonomous government enabled the Creoles to satisfy long-lasting political aspirations.

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                                                Biographies and Memoirs

                                                In comparison to other South American countries, especially Argentina, Chile does not have a strong biographical tradition. Historians of the 19th-century were prolific biographers of Chile’s founding fathers, although, instead of contextualizing the lives of their characters, the works were either too glorifying or too critical. In the 20th century, this tendency is somewhat moderated by Eyzaguirre 1946, a biography of O’Higgins, but Alemparte 1966 and Villalobos 1961 (both cited under Chile at the End of the 18th Century), biographies of Carrera, Freire, and Diego Portales, were conceived with the Manichean purpose of attacking or defending their subjects of study. In English there is an interesting biography of O’Higgins, Clissold 1968, which delivers impressions of Lord Cochrane and San Martín that are especially important. In the case of contemporary memoirs, historians thankfully have produced more abundantly. Two memoirs or autobiographies are worthy of mention: Graham 1824 is an entertaining account of Chile in the early 1820s. Pinto 1941, for its part, is an invaluable primary source not only when studying the life of this influential liberal politician but also the political and military situation of Chile prior to 1810.

                                                • Clissold, Stephen. Bernardo O’Higgins and the Independence of Chile. London: Rupert Hart-Davis, 1968.

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                                                  This biography is the most complete work on Bernardo O’Higgins in English, and, although it does not include many original sources, it gives an interesting picture of the links Bernardo and his father Ambrosio had with England and Ireland, respectively. Another important subject in this biography is Lord Thomas Cochrane, who was in charge of the organization of Chile’s first national Navy.

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                                                  • Eyzaguirre, Jaime. O’Higgins. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Zig-Zag, 1946.

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                                                    This is still the most important biography of O’Higgins written in the last seven decades. Especially interesting are the chapters dedicated to O’Higgins’ stay in Europe during his youth, in both Spain and England. This book does not include a great amount of original material, although its narrative is entertaining, and it gives the reader a good summary of how O’Higgins became involved in politics.

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                                                    • Graham, Maria. Journal of a Residence in Chile during the Year 1822. London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, Brown, and Green, 1824.

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                                                      Maria Graham’s Journal of a Residence in Chile is an entertaining account of Chile in the early 1820s. Especially important are her impressions of Lord Cochrane, O’Higgins, and San Martín. She arrived in Chile in April 1822, that is, in the midst of O’Higgins’ government, and had contact with the Santiago elites. She wrote not only about politics, but also about landscapes and local traditions.

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                                                      • Latcham, Ricardo. Vida de Manuel Rodríguez. El guerrillero. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Nascimiento, 1932.

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                                                        One of the first biographies written on Manuel Rodríguez, Latcham’s work traces the life of one of Chile’s renowned independence figures. Rodríguez was a lawyer who, in 1815, turned into a guerrilla fighter after the battle of Rancagua. More apologetic than critical, this biography presents nevertheless an amusing account of Rodríguez’ life, especially of his role during the so-called guerra de zapa (i.e., irregular warfare) in the period 1815–1817.

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                                                        • Pinto, Francisco Antonio. “Apuntes Autobiográficos.” Boletín de Academia Chilena de la Historia 17 (1941): 69–107.

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                                                          Francisco Antonio Pinto’s “Apuntes Autobiográficos” refers to the years immediately before the juntista revolution of 1810. This memoir provides an insightful analysis of the educational system during the colonial regime, as well as an account of the repercussions in Chile of the British invasions of the Río de la Plata in 1806–1807.

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                                                          • Téllez, Raúl. El general Juan Mackenna. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Francisco de Aguirre, 1976.

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                                                            The great merit of this biography is not so much its content as its main subject of study—Juan Mackenna, an Irish military engineer who arrived in Chile in the second half of the 18th century and became involved in the administration of the colony. Mackenna became one of the most influential officers of the revolutionary army, being as well one of O’Higgins’ mentors.

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                                                            • Vicuña, Mackenna Benjamín. Vida del capitán general don Bernardo O’Higgins. Santiago, Chile: Editorial del Pacífico, 1976.

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                                                              The most important aspect of this work refers to the documents used by the author to justify his interpretation. Indeed, Vicuña Mackenna collected in Perú many of the sources that are published in this work and that give a refreshing picture of O’Higgins, his allies, and his enemies. The 1976 version that we include here has an introductory essay by Claudio Orrego Vicuña and a speech by Vicuña Mackenna when O’Higgins’ ashes were relocated to Santiago in 1872.

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                                                              • Zapiola, José. Recuerdos de treinta años, 1810–1840. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Zig-Zag, 1945.

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                                                                This memoir is an interesting account of cultural and political events during the revolutionary period. Especially amusing are Zapiola’s remarks on how music and theatre developed in Chile during these years, as well as his positive opinion of Governor García Carrasco, traditionally seen from a negative perspective both by 19th and 20th-century historians.

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                                                                Politics

                                                                In addition to general overviews on Chilean independence, there are many works that study this period from a political point of view. Beginning with Edwards 1989 (first published in 1927) and finishing with Góngora 1986 (first published in 1981), historians have emphasized the role of politics in Chile’s struggle for independence. One of the principal hypotheses of Edwards 1989 is that, after 1808, politics in Chile began to play a visible role, and that the local “aristocracy” became the main beneficiary of a process that, in the author’s opinion, allowed its members to oppose the “authority of the governments.” Góngora 1986 proposes that the War of Independence acted as the first catalyst of a “properly national sentiment.” Edwards 1989 and Góngora 1986 share the view that, after the chaotic period of 1823–1830, order was consolidated, and that Diego Portales built a strong state. Donoso 1946 contests this interpretation, arguing that there were liberal reformists from independence to the 1870s (i.e., the decade when the Leyes Laicas were sanctioned) who provided Chile with stability. In the early 2000s, both approaches have been challenged by less partisan historians, prompting the surfacing of a series of new subjects. Guerrero Lira 2002, for example, is one of the most original books on the period 1814–1817, the years when, according to Amunátegui and Amunátegui 1912 (cited under General Overviews), the Spaniards re-conquered Chile and established a bloody and despotic regime. Guerrero Lira 2002 claims that the behavior of the counterrevolutionaries must be studied in the context of a civil war, and that repression measures employed by the royalists are similar to those used by the revolutionaries before 1814 and after 1817. Valenzuela 2005 presents a refreshing picture of the Franciscans during the first stages of the revolution. Especially interesting is the hypothesis in Valenzuela 2005 that this religious order did not act monolithically throughout the period, but changed its allegiances according to specific events. Finally, Serrano and Ossa 2010 suggests that politics in 1810 were linked to military matters, as a Defensive Plan of the Santiago Junta claiming sovereignty over the island of Chiloé (administratively dependent on Lima since 1768) proves.

                                                                • Cartes Montory, Armando. Concepción contra “Chile”: Consensos y tensiones regionales en la Patria Vieja (1808–1811). Santiago, Chile: Centro de Estudios Bicentenario, 2010.

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                                                                  Cartes Montory’s hypothesis is that the spirit of the revolution was not born in Santiago, as the traditional historiography has generally argued, but in Concepción. It was in Concepción where, according to this author, the political radicalism of Chileans was incubated and developed. In his view, in the 1800s, the patriots from Concepción dominated the political spectrum, stressing that in Concepción the majority advocated for the patria.

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                                                                  • Donoso, Ricardo. Las ideas políticas en Chile. México: Fondo de Cultura Económica, 1946.

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                                                                    In this work, Donoso presents the different debates on the importance and significance of liberty during the 19th century. Donoso analyzes debates on political rights, the freedom of the press, and religious tolerance.

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                                                                    • Edwards, Alberto. La fronda aristocrática en Chile. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1989.

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                                                                      One of Edwards’ principal hypotheses is that, before 1808, political activities in Chile were circumscribed to a small group of people whose loyalty to the monarchy was unquestionable. After that date, politics began to play a much more visible role in Chile, the local aristocracy being the main beneficiary of a process that allowed its members to oppose the authority of the governments. Hence the use of the word fronda in his book.

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                                                                      • Góngora, Mario. Ensayo histórico sobre la noción de Estado en Chile en los siglos XIX y XX. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1986.

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                                                                        In this book, Mario Góngora argues that the War of Independence acted as the first catalyst of a properly national sentiment. For him, the battle for Independence was the first of a series of military conflicts that gave Chile its actual political character.

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                                                                        • Guerrero Lira, Cristián. La contrarrevolución de la Independencia en Chile. Santiago, Chile: DIBAM, 2002.

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                                                                          This is one of the most original works written on Chilean Independence in the last decade. It focuses in the period 1814–1817 and analyzes the counterrevolutionary government established in Chile after the battle of Rancagua in October 1814. Guerrero’s main hypothesis is that the royalist administrations were not as despotic as the Amunáteguis claimed, nor did the Chilean elites immediately oppose them.

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                                                                          • Lowenthal, Mary. “Kinship politics in the Chilean Independence Movement.” HAHR 56.1 (1976).

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                                                                            This article argues that the Independence movement in Chile was led by a reduced number of families who were closely related to each other. The most powerful family was the Larraín family, better known as the group of the Ochocientos (Eight Hundred) because of its large number and social relations in the principal cities of the country.

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                                                                            • Ossa, Juan Luis. “Revolución y constitucionalismo en Chile.” Revista de Historia Iberoamericana 2012.

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                                                                              Ossa claims that the Cádiz code never did go into effect in Chilean territory. Indeed, in a decision made to stress its autonomy vis-à-vis both the metropolis and Viceroy Abascal (but not necessarily vis-à-vis the king), José Miguel Carrera’s government published its own Reglamento Constitucional in October 1812.

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                                                                              • Serrano, Sol, and Santa Cruz Juan Luis Ossa. “1810 en Chile: autonomía, soberanía popular y territorio.” In Roberto Breña (coordinator), “Iberoamérica en 1810: emancipación, autonomía y lealtad,” dossier published in Historia y Política. Vol. 24. Madrid, July–December, 2010.

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                                                                                Serrano and Ossa summarize the main events that led to the creation of Chile’s first administrative junta in September 1810. The concepts of autonomy, popular sovereignty, and territory are used to prove that the juntista movement revolutionized both the military defense and the role of the local authorities when re-configuring the Chilean frontiers, especially in relation to the Peruvian viceroyalty.

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                                                                                • Valenzuela, Jaime. “Los franciscanos de Chillán y la independencia: avatares de una comunidad monarquista.” Historia I.38 (June 2005): Santiago.

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                                                                                  Valenzuela studies the role played by the Franciscans during Chile’s struggle for Independence. His thesis is that the Franciscan religious order faced different ideological positions, although in general its members were supporters of the royalists. The main group of loyalist Franciscans was established in Chillán, about 500 kilometers south of Santiago.

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                                                                                  Economy

                                                                                  Following the boom of Marxist interpretations and the example of the French Annales, economic studies on Chilean struggle for Independence became popular in the 1950s and 1960s. Ramírez Necochea 1959 is a good example of the influence of the Marxist School among Chilean scholars. The thesis of Ramírez Necochea 1959 is that, in spite of the economic growth of Chile during the colonial period, the local merchants and economy were subjected to the monopoly of the metropolis, creating resentment among the Chilean elites, who took advantage of the political crisis provoked by the Bayonne abdications to lead the local economy and declare their independence from Madrid and Lima. This hypothesis is contested in Villalobos 1968, which challenges the view that the Creoles sought independence because they reacted against the alleged restrictions imposed on Chile by the crown. Cavieres 1996 proposes that the Chilean economy before 1810 was more dynamic and internationalized than previously thought. Cavieres 2003 furthers this argument, stating that Chile’s most important merchants were powerful enough to negotiate economic privileges in exchange for their economic help.

                                                                                  • Cavieres, Eduardo. El comercio chileno en la economía mundo colonial. Valparaíso, Chile: Ediciones Universitarias de Valparaíso, 1996.

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                                                                                    In this book, Eduardo Cavieres analyzes the functioning of a series of Chilean business houses with linkages to a wide range of international business houses. His thesis that the colonial economy worked as a central-peripheral system, centers being sometimes peripheries and vice versa, gives a dynamic picture of the Chilean economy at the turn of the 18th and 19th century.

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                                                                                    • Cavieres, Eduardo. Servir al soberano sino detrimento del vasallo. Valparaíso, Chile: Ediciones Universitarias de Valparaíso de la Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, 2003.

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                                                                                      Cavieres’s theory is that the Chilean colonial elites negotiated their support to the crown in exchange of economic privileges. The title of this book comes from a primary source that shows that the Chilean subjects felt strongly that their contribution to the imperial economy should not affect their own interests. This proves the increasing weakening of the Spanish metropolis, exhausted as it was due to its involvement in the European wars of the period 1770–1800.

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                                                                                      • Ramírez Necochea, Hernán. Antecedentes económicos de la Independencia de Chile. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1959.

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                                                                                        Ramírez’s thesis is that, in spite of the economic growth of Chile during the colonial period, the local merchants and economy were subjected to the monopoly of the metropolis. This, Ramírez claims, created resentment among the Chilean elites, who took advantage of this situation to declare independence.

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                                                                                        • Rector, John L. “El impacto económico de la Independencia en América Latina: el caso de Chile.” Historia 20 (1985): 295–317. Santiago.

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                                                                                          This article gives an overview of the main economic consequences of the wars of Independence in Chile. Rector’s thesis is that the country attained economic prosperity in the 1830s due to the political stability brought about by Diego Portales and Manuel Rengifo. The latter was one of the first Chilean Ministers of Finance who advocated the freedom of trade.

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                                                                                          • Villalobos, Sergio. El comercio y la crisis colonial: un mito de la independencia. Santiago: Ediciones de la Universidad de Chile, 1968.

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                                                                                            Villalobos contradicts the view that the Creoles sought independence because they reacted against the alleged restrictions imposed on Chile by the crown. For Villalobos, the Chileans were not weakened by the Bourbon economic reforms nor were they really interested in competing more freely in the international market.

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                                                                                            Social Life

                                                                                            Chile’s main social historians have generally been critical of the leadership of the elites in the process that led to Independence, questioning that it had provoked revolutionary social changes. Yet other historians have shown interest in studying Independence from a social perspective, focusing above all on the lower classes. By lower classes they understand slaves, inquilinos, guerrilla fighters, common soldiers, militiamen, Indians, mestizos, and a varied range of people who lived either in the Araucanian region, in the haciendas of the Central Valley, or in the few mining centers of the north of the country. The military role of slaves and black people in general (mulattos included) was recently analyzed in Contreras 2011, which summarizes the history of the Batallón de Infantes de la Patria during the period 1810–1820. This battalion participated actively in the battle of Maipú. But while black men fought for the revolutionaries in exchange for their freedom, there were many regular soldiers who were forcedly dragged into the insurgent ranks. León 2011 traces the history of complete divisions of common soldiers who deserted en masse during the first stage of the civil war. The hypothesis of this work is that the two combatant armies were formed by conscripted recruits who were not ideologically committed to either side. Labarca 2004 and Müller 2004, meanwhile, are studies of the popular support given by the lower classes to José Miguel Carrera in the first years of the revolution. According to these articles, Carrera was not a convinced popular leader, but a representative of the elites who manipulated the mobilization of the plebe to advance his political project. A different approach is Grez Toso 1998, which analyzes the political participation of the Chilean lower classes in the 1820s, concluding that groups of artisans developed their own forms of social protest. Grez Toso follows Eric Hobsbawm’s idea that this sort of behavior was “pre-political.”

                                                                                            • Contador, Ana María. Los Pincheira. Un caso de bandidaje social. Chile, 1817–1832. Santiago, Chile: Bravo y Allende Editores, 1998.

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                                                                                              This book traces the history of the Pincheiras, a family of peasants turned into guerrilla fighters who fought against the revolutionaries and later confronted the republican army. Contador claims that their case is an example of royalist “social banditry,” showing at the same time the difficulties faced by the new Chilean state to legitimize its political project outside the ruling classes.

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                                                                                              • Contreras, Hugo. “Artesanos mulatos y soldados beneméritos. El Batallón de Infantes de la Patria en la Guerra de Independencia de Chile, 1795–1820.” Historia 44.1 (June 2011): 51–89.

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                                                                                                This work traces the history of the Batallón de Infantes de la Patria in the period 1795–1820. This battalion was formed by free African Americans of Santiago, most of whom were artisans. African American artisans were relatively wealthy and had links with other artisan groups that lived in the city during Chile’s struggle for independence. After the outbreak of the war in 1813, they generally became involved in the revolutionary army, creating a sort of esprit de corp that allowed them to be recognized as loyal citizens and soldados beneméritos.

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                                                                                                • Grez Toso, Sergio. De la “regeneración del pueblo” a la huelga general. Génesis y evolución histórica del movimiento popular en Chile (1810–1890). Santiago, Chile: DIBAM, 1998.

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                                                                                                  In some of the chapters of his De la “regeneración del pueblo” a la huelga general, Sergio Grez Toso argues that in most cases the lower classes were “instrumentalized” by the elites for their own convenience. However, he also accepts that in 1820s, groups of artisans developed their own forms of social protest.

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                                                                                                  • Labarca, Mariana. “José Miguel Carrera y las clases populares, 1811–1813.” In Seminario Simon Collier 2004. Edited by N. Cruz and I. Jaksic, 91–114. Santiago: Instituto de Historia de la Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, 2004.

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                                                                                                    This article studies the relationship between José Miguel Carrera and Chile’s lower classes. Labarca’s hypothesis is that Carrera did not have a real interest in creating a strong connection with the plebe. Popular indifference to the revolutionary army, Labarca argues, shows the lack of patriotism of the rank-and-file soldiers, especially when Carrera introduced forced conscription in order to face the royalist menace.

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                                                                                                    • León, Leonardo. Ni patriotas ni realistas. El bajo pueblo durante la Independencia de Chile, 1810–1822. Santiago, Chile: DIBAM, 2011.

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                                                                                                      The aim of this book is twofold: First, to show that the so-called plebe had an autonomist political agenda and that, because of this, the lower classes were ideologically attracted to neither the revolutionaries nor the royalists. Second, to prove that the republican system introduced in Chile after the Declaration of Independence in 1818 was the vehicle through which the elites sought to keep the common people disciplined.

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                                                                                                      • Müller, Javiera. “Adhesiones populares. El mito del apoyo popular a Carrera.” In Seminario Simon Collier 2004. Edited by N. Cruz and I. Jaksic, 115–138. Santiago: Instituto de Historia de la Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, 115–138. 2004.

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                                                                                                        This work claims that Carrera “instrumentalized” the lower classes in an attempt to legitimize his political project. As a consequence, Müller says, the ideological commitment of the lower classes to Carrera’s government was by no means sincere.

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                                                                                                        • Pinto, Julio, and Valdivia Ortíz de Zárate Verónica. ¿Chilenos todos? La construcción de la nación (1810–1840). Santiago, Chile: LOM Ediciones, 2009.

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                                                                                                          Pinto’s and Ortíz de Zarate’s thesis is that Independence did not improve the material conditions of the common people (rank-and-file soldiers, inquilinos, artisans, and slaves) nor did warfare encourage their adherence to the new state. In their opinion, the lower classes were either excluded from the process of state building or were never truly interested in it.

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                                                                                                          • Villalobos R., Sergio. “El bajo pueblo en el pensamiento de los precursores de 1810.” Anales de la Universidad de Chile 120 (1960): 36–49.

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                                                                                                            This article shows the interest of the small group of Chilean economic reformists (the so-called precursores) for the lower classes at the turn of the 18th and 19th century. Villalobos studies the writings of men of letters such as Manuel de Salas, José de Cos Iriberi, and Anselmo de la Cruz, concluding that, in spite of the efforts made by these enlightened figures, inquilinos, miners, and poor children did not significantly improve their material conditions.

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                                                                                                            Ideas and Culture

                                                                                                            Collier 1967 (cited under General Overviews) is undoubtedly the most important book written on the role of ideas during the revolutionary period. However, because this is not only a book of ideas but also one that analyzes this process considering political, social, cultural, and economic factors, it is better to include it in the list of general overviews. Silva Castro 1951 summarizes the main events that led to the creation of Chile’s National Library. A series of original and useful works have been published since then. Jocelyn-Holt Letelier 1998, for example, argues that the study of culture during the revolutionary period has too often been subordinated to state-building approaches. Stuven 2000 discusses the cultural polemics led by the elites throughout the 19th century, concluding that the revolution created new public spaces that were used by the ruling classes to implement liberal policies. Political ideas are the main subject of Castillo 2009, a book that provides a useful synopsis of the works of Chile’s most famous men of letters of the period, Camilo Henríquez, Juan Egaña, and José Miguel Infante. Peralta 2007 addresses why September 18 (the day of the installation of the Santiago Junta in 1810) became Chile’s national day. The culturalist approach of Peralta 2007 is in line with Subercaseaux 1997, the ambitious three-volume project on Chile’s history of ideas and culture. The first volume is dedicated to the first half of the 19th century and it argues that the basic agent of the new Chilean nation was the enlightened and liberal elite that surfaced during and immediately after Independence.

                                                                                                            • Castillo, Vasco. La creación de la República. La filosofía pública en Chile, 1810–1830. Santiago, Chile: LOM Ediciones, 2009.

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                                                                                                              Castillo studies the writings of the main Chilean men of letters of the independence period. The cases of Henríquez and Egaña are particularly interesting, as their initial radical position moderated with the passage of time. Although this book provides a good analysis of the writings of these intellectuals, the author does not introduce their work within a general historical context.

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                                                                                                              • Gazmuri, Cristián. “Libros e ideas políticas francesas en la gestación de la Independencia de Chile.” In La Revolución Francesa y Chile. Edited by Ricardo Krebs and Cristián Gazmuri, 151–178. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1990.

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                                                                                                                The author argues that during the first years of the Chilean revolution there was a group of men of letters and military men who read, or at least had some access to, the books and ideas of the Enlightenment and the French Revolution. However, figures like Camilo Henríquez, Juan Egaña, and Juan Martínez de Rozas pragmatically combined these ideas with those of the Spanish Scholasticism, a very plausible hypothesis if we consider that Chile’s revolution was unlikely inspired by one ideological tradition.

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                                                                                                                • Jocelyn-Holt Letelier, Alfredo. “La República de la virtud’: repensar la cultura chilena de la época de la Independencia.” In El peso de la noche: nuestra frágil fortaleza histórica. By Alfredo Jocelyn-Holt Letelier, 65–103. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Planeta, Ariel, 1998.

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                                                                                                                  Jocelyn-Holt argues that the study of culture during the revolutionary period has been subordinated to state-building approaches. In so doing, he refers to the most important works of this historiographical tradition, criticizing that they had seen culture as an appendix of political order and institutions.

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                                                                                                                  • Peralta, Paulina. ¡Chile tiene fiesta! El origen del 18 de septiembre (1810–1837). Santiago, Chile: LOM Ediciones, 2007.

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                                                                                                                    The author traces the history of, and the political and economic reasons for, why September 18 became Chile’s national day. It was on that day in 1810 that the first Chilean administrative junta was created. However, this did not immediately lead to its official recognition since other dates were also commemorated in the aftermath of Independence. It was only in 1837 that Joaquín Prieto’s government established September 18 as Chile’s national day.

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                                                                                                                    • Silva Castro, Raúl. Los primeros años de la Biblioteca Nacional (1813–1824). Santiago, Chile: Imprenta Universitaria, 1951.

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                                                                                                                      This article reconstructs the origins of Chile’s National Library, introducing original documents that shed light about the difficulties faced by the authorities both to collect books and to find a proper space to house the Library. This is an informative work, although it does not include a sophisticated interpretation of the importance of books and ideas in a revolutionary context.

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                                                                                                                      • Stuven, Ana María. La seducción de un orden: las elites y la construcción de Chile en las polémicas culturales y políticas del siglo XIX. Santiago, Chile: Ediciones Universidad Católica, 2000.

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                                                                                                                        In the first chapter of this book, Stuven analyzes the origins of the political and cultural project of the Chilean elite between 1810 and 1840. During these decades, the elite established a liberal order not only through the building of new institutions but also through political and cultural debates. The revolution created new public spaces (like the written press) that were used by the ruling classes to implement liberal policies.

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                                                                                                                        • Subercaseaux, Bernardo. Historia de las ideas y de la cultura en Chile. Vol. I. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1997.

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                                                                                                                          This volume studies the intellectual influence of José Victorino Lastarria, a liberal man of letters and a politician whose use and elaboration of political ideas was key for the construction of a distinctive Chilean liberal conscience. Lastarria’s influence was felt in the following areas: literature, historiography, politics, society, and intellectual debates.

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                                                                                                                          The Military

                                                                                                                          Along with civil politicians, the military have received the greatest attention from historians of the revolutionary period. Most of these works are apologetic and nationalistic, not least because of the close relationship between 19th-century historians and the principal military men who fought for the revolutionary side. The case of historian Gonzalo Bulnes is particularly illustrative of this phenomenon. Gonzalo Bulnes was the son of Manuel Bulnes, a young officer of the insurgent army and eventually president of Chile. His notable work Bulnes 1887 recounts the participation of Chileans in the Liberating Army that was organized by José de San Martín and Bernardo O’Higgins to re-conquer Peru from the royalists. Espejo 1882 argues that San Martín’s Army of the Andes was formed mainly by Argentines and that the participation of Chileans was only marginal, an opinion that, although empirically true, overlooks the role of Chilean guerrilla fighters when re-conquering Chile from the royalists in early 1817. Other works on the military include Allendesalazar 1963, a prosopographic study of Chile’s colonial army that shows that at least 70 percent of the ranks of the militias and the regular army were in hands not of Spaniards but of Creoles. This is indisputable proof that, when the war between revolutionaries and royalists began in 1813, both armies were formed mainly by Chilean-born soldiers. Ossa 2012 shares this argument; however, following Rolle 1990, the author Ossa emphasizes that Chile’s first civil war was also a revolution. Vergara 1993, on the other hand, provides an account of the social aspects of the Chilean army, as well as a summary of the principal events of Independence. This is also the case of the first chapters of Arancibia 2007. Finally, two works are worthy of mention: Campos Harriet 1958 serves as an opening door to the study of the military who defended the king’s cause, while Worcester 1971 presents an overview of the role of the navy in Chile’s struggle for Independence.

                                                                                                                          • Allendesalazar, Jorge. “Ejército y Milicias del reino de Chile (1735–1815).” Boletín de la Academia Chilena de la Historia, 66 (1963): 102–178; 67:197–271; 68:200–305.

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                                                                                                                            This is an indispensable prosopographic source to study the conformation of the regular army and the militias in Chile at the end of the 18th century. It provides the names, ranks, and places of birth of the men who formed the army, with which the historians can extrapolate different conclusions. The most important is that, at the turn of the century, both the army and the militias overwhelmingly included American-born soldiers and militiamen.

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                                                                                                                            • Arancibia, Patricia, ed. El Ejército de los chilenos. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Biblioteca Americana, 2007.

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                                                                                                                              The first chapter of this book narrates the main episodes of Chile’s struggle for Independence from a military perspective. It does not present an argument for the process, but its study of the political role of the revolutionary officers is useful when entering into the subject.

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                                                                                                                              • Bulnes, Gonzalo. Historia de la Expedición Libertadora del Perú. Santiago, Chile: Rafael Jover Editor, 1887.

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                                                                                                                                In these two volumes, Bulnes traces the history of the Ejército Libertadora del Perú, an army that was formed by contingents from Chile, the Río de la Plata, and eventually Peru. Employing the correspondence of Francisco Antonio Pinto, general of the Chilean division, Bulnes concludes that the Army of Chile became estranged from the Liberating Army after suffering the arrogance of their comrades in arms from the Río de la Plata.

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                                                                                                                                • Campos Harriet, Fernando. Los defensores del Rey. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Andrés Bello, 1958.

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                                                                                                                                  Campos Harriet’s was one of the few historians in the 20th century who studied the role of the royalist officers during Chile’s struggle for Independence. Even though this book does not provide a complete list of the loyalists who fought for the king, its pages are an opening door to more exhaustive works on those who were defeated not only in the battlefield but also in the political terrain.

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                                                                                                                                  • Espejo, Gerónimo. El Paso de Los Andes: crónica histórica de las operaciones del Ejército de Los Andes, para la Restauración de Chile en 1817. Buenos Aires, Argentina: Imprenta y Librería de Mayo, 1882.

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                                                                                                                                    Although this work could be considered a primary military source, it is also a book filled with anecdotes written by a former officer of the army of the Andes. In this book, the historian can make a good idea of how the army was organized, fed, and trained. Espejo, who was born in the Río de la Plata, had a clear preference for his compatriots, the future Argentines.

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                                                                                                                                    • Ossa, Juan Luis. “Ejército, política y revolución en Chile, 1780–1826.” Rivista italiana di studi napoleonici Anno XLI, Nuova Serie, 1–2, 2012.

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                                                                                                                                      This article summarizes the main political events in which military men were involved during the period 1780–1826. The author argues that officers and soldiers became powerful political figures as a consequence of the militarization of politics after 1810. The author proposes that officers like Carrera, O’Higgins, Freire, and Pinto became undisputed masters of the Chilean territory, and that they built their political bases upon the loyalty of their military comrades.

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                                                                                                                                      • Rolle, Claudio. “Los militares como agentes de la revolución.” In La Revolución Francesa y Chile. Edited by Ricardo Krebs and Cristián Gazmuri, 277–301. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1990.

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                                                                                                                                        Rolle presents the hypothesis that the Chilean military of the fight for independence were influenced by the French revolutionary and Napoleonic armies when facing the royalist menace. Also, Rolle claims, the military were agents of the revolution, as many of them introduced profound changes in the political system during their respective times in office.

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                                                                                                                                        • Vergara, Quiroz Sergio. Historia Social del Ejército de Chile. 2 vols. Santiago: Universidad de Chile, Vicerrectoría Académica y Estudiantil, Departamento Técnico de Investigación, 1993.

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                                                                                                                                          Vergara provides an account of the social aspects of the Chilean army, as well as a summary of the principal events of Independence. The book is not dedicated exclusively to the revolutionary period, but it is still an interesting contribution to the understanding of the role of the military at the turn of the 18th and 19th century. Volume 2 studies more deeply the social characteristics of Chile’s army in the 19th century.

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                                                                                                                                          • Worcester, Donald E. El poder naval y la Independencia de Chile. Buenos Aires, Argentina: Editorial Francisco de Aguirre, 1971.

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                                                                                                                                            This book summarizes the main events related to the creation of Chile’s first national navy. The author dedicates various chapters to analyzing the role of Thomas Cochrane in the maritime campaigns of the early 1820s, finishing with the capitulation of the Island Chiloé, the last royalist stronghold in Chile, in 1826. This edition includes a useful list of short biographies of the principal figures of Chile’s struggle for Independence.

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                                                                                                                                            International Relations

                                                                                                                                            International relations are the less studied subject of Chile’s struggle for independence, as generally Independence has been seen from a strictly national perspective. The Atlantic approach adopted lately by historians from Europe and the United States has served as an antidote against national studies. The main contribution of Atlantic historians has been, in fact, to introduce peripheral territories like Chile into a more general and dynamic context of changes and continuities. A good example of this approach is Guerrero Lira 2010, which argues that the Chilean revolutionaries had strong connections with other insurgents of the continent, especially in the regions of the Río de la Plata and Peru. There are a few general histories of the connection between South America and the great powers, Great Britain and the United States, during the first decades of the 19th century. Manning 1925 is a multivolume work that gathers thousands of diplomatic papers related to this period. Chile is a secondary protagonist in this book, although it contains correspondence between the US councilors in Chile and the State Department in Washington during the years when the Chilean state was seeking international recognition. In the case of Britain, Webster 1938 contains useful documents on how the British authorities, in London and in Valparaíso, reacted to the Chilean revolution. More specifically, Montaner 1961 is the most complete work on the attempts of the Chilean revolutionaries to obtain the diplomatic recognition of the newly created republic by various European countries.

                                                                                                                                            • Guerrero Lira, Cristián. “Chile y el Mundo.” In Chile: Crisis Imperial e Independencia. By Joaquín Fermandois and Juan Ricardo Couyoumdjian, 89–138. Madrid: Mapfre-Taurus, 2010.

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                                                                                                                                              Guerrero proposes that the Santiago Junta of 1810 signed an implicit agreement with the Buenos Aires authorities in order to confront external enemies. Additionally, Guerrero makes reference to the role of the Chilean state in the organization of the Liberating Army of Peru, as well as to the different ways in which the European powers reacted to the Declaration of the Independence of Chile.

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                                                                                                                                              • Johnson, John J. “Early Relations of the United States with Chile.” Pacific Historical Review 13 (1944).

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                                                                                                                                                This article is an attempt to reconstruct the first American encounters with the Southern Pacific Ocean, specifically with the Chilean ports. Johnson provides a picture of the role played by contraband at the end of the 18th century, arguing that there were contacts between American seamen and Chile’s authorities that hastened recognition by the United States of Chilean Independence in 1823.

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                                                                                                                                                • Manning, William R. ed. Diplomatic Correspondence of the United States concerning the Independence of the Latin American Nations. New York: Oxford University Press, 1925.

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                                                                                                                                                  William Manning’s multivolume work gathers thousands of diplomatic papers related to this period. Chile is a secondary protagonist in this book, although it contains correspondence between the US councilors in Chile and the State Department in Washington during the years when the Chilean state was seeking international recognition. Especially interesting are the papers sent from Chile to the American authorities by the US special agent W. G. D. Worthington.

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                                                                                                                                                  • Montaner, Bello Ricardo. Historia diplomática de la Independencia de Chile. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Andrés Bello, 1961.

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                                                                                                                                                    This is the most complete work on the attempts of the revolutionaries to obtain diplomatic recognition of the Chilean republic in Europe. It includes thirteen documents of the period 1813–1828, the most interesting of which is the “Instruction” given by the 1813 Chilean Junta to Francisco Antonio Pinto to defend its political interests in London.

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                                                                                                                                                    • Pereira Salas, Eugenio. Los primeros contactos entre Chile y los Estados Unidos, 1778–1809. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Andrés Bello, 1971.

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                                                                                                                                                      Pereira Salas argues that the Pacific Ocean was the main scenario in which contacts between Chile and the United States took place, especially once the Chilean coasts were opened to the American whalers. Other means of contact included American travelers who left invaluable descriptions of Chile during this period; and some even introduced revolutionary propaganda prior to 1810.

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                                                                                                                                                      • Webster, C. K., ed. Britain and the Independence of Latin America. 2 vols. London: Oxford University Press, 1938.

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                                                                                                                                                        In the few pages dedicated to Chile in Volume 1 of this work, we find a few documents that refer to the Chilean revolution and that were written by or to the first British consuls who were sent to Valparaíso in the 1820s. These documents are currently held in Britain’s National Archives at Kew Gardens.

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