Marta Harnecker

Marta Harnecker is a Chilean psychologist, writer, journalist and a prominent investigator and commentator on experiences of social transformation in Latin America.

Marta was a student of Louis Althusser in Paris. After her return to Chile in 1968 she began a life-long process of spreading Marx and Lenin’s ideas in order to train revolutionary students, workers and peasants. Her books and pamphlets have been widely utilized over the last forty five years by revolutionary parties and organizations throughout Latin America and Spain as well as other countries.

After the counter-revolutionary coup against Allende in Chile in 1973, she moved to Cuba where she became Director of the research center "Memoria Popular Latinoamericana" (MEPLA) in Havana.

Since the eighties, Marta has dedicated a great part of her time to collecting testimonies. She has written books about the guerrilla experiences in Central America and Colombia, as well as the political left in Latin America. Some of them have been translated into English.

From 2004 to 2011, Marta lived in Venezuela, based at the Centro International Miranda research institute, and served as an advisor to President Chávez and to various Venezuelan institutions. Now she lives in Vancouver.

Marta was the director of two programs — "Popular participation in public management" and "Political instruments for the 21st century" — at the Centro Internacional Miranda in Caracas, Venezuela between 2006 and 2010.

Marta is one of the most widely read authors of the Latin American Marxist left. She has written extensively on the Cuban Revolution, and on the nature of socialist democracy.

Marta is the author of over 80 books and monographs in several languages, including books and pamphlets for popular education:

  • A World to Build: New Paths Towards 21st Century Socialism (2015)
  • Instruments for Doing Politics (2013)
  • Ideas for the Struggle (2009)
  • Rebuilding the Left (2007)
  • Understanding the Venezuelan Revolution (2005)

A World to Build won the “Liberatador Price for the Critical Thinking” in 2013 and was published by Monthly Review Press in 2015. It is available now in India from Aakar Books.

Her latest book Planning from below (A proposal of decentralized participatory planning) has been published in 2015 in Cuba and Spain, and now is in the process of translation into English, inspired in part by the Kerala experience of planning.

Several of Marta Harnecker's articles and interviews with Marta have been featured on Links online journal of socialist renewal. This is Marta Harnecker’s first visit to Australia.

Marta's latest article on Links: Social Movements and Progressive Governments - Building a New Relationship in Latin America