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NEW YORK The North American Congress on Latin America (NACLA) will honor renowned author Ariel Dorfman with the Latin America Peace and Justice Award and the School of the Americas Watch with its ¡La Lucha Sigue! Award for Activism in the Americas for their efforts to bring human rights abuses to light and to promote peace and justice in the Americas.
The awards will be presented to Ariel Dorfman and the School of the Americas Watch at NACLA¹s Benefit Gala to be held on Thursday, May 15th from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. The event will celebrate NACLA¹s 40 years of fighting for justice in the Americas and will be hosted by the organization’s founders and supporters including Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez. Limited tickets to the event are available at
Ariel Dorfman To Accept the Latin America Peace and Justice Award
Ariel Dorfman, renowned Chilean essayist, novelist, playwright, poet, activist, and distinguished professor of literature at Duke University, has been a pre-eminent promoter of human rights, peace, and justice for more than three decades. Following the 1973 military coup in Chile, Dorfman was forced into exile due to his provocative writings and protests. Dorfman’s books, translated into over 40 languages, and his plays, staged in more than 100 countries, have brought attention to issues of political repression, torture, and disappearances resulting from dictatorships. A 2007 film, entitled A Promise to the Dead: The Exile Journey of Ariel Dorfman by director Peter Raymont, was based on Dorfman’s best-selling memoir, Heading South, Looking North. The film was shortlisted for an Oscar nomination.
NACLA to Honor School of the Americas Watch with the ¡La Lucha Sigue! Award
for Activism in the Americas
NACLA will honor the School of the Americas Watch (SOA Watch) with an award celebrating new generations of grassroots organizing for justice in the Americas. SOA Watch monitors and advocates against the operation of the School of the Americas, renamed the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (WHINSEC), whose graduates have been linked to numerous cases of human rights abuses including false imprisonments, kidnappings, torture, rapes, and unlawful executions. SOA Watch¹s last, annual vigil to close the WHINSEC in Fort Benning, Georgia, drew 25,000 protesters including then presidential candidates Dennis Kucinich and Cynthia McKinney, Iraq warveterans, and religious leaders.
The North American Congress on Latin America was founded in the late 1960s with the belief that research and knowledge are vital to social justice struggles. As an independent non-profit, NACLA uses a unique combination of media-based activism and popular education to change the terms of the public debate, and bring the covered-up, the overlooked, and the under-reported to light. Through their flagship publication, NACLA Report on the Americas; a web resource center; the books and anthologies published; events, seminars and teach-ins; radio shows; and investigative journalism programs, NACLA has reached hundreds of thousands of activists, students, scholars, and journalists in their four decades of work. Visit <http://www.nacla.org>.