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Law in Context

Abstract from Volume 34 No 1 (2016) Law and Love

Between Love of Revolution and Hatred of Injustice, or, The Erotic Jurisprudence of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara

Luis Gómez Romero joined the School of Law at the University of Wollongong in June 2013, where he teaches legal theory, human rights law and constitutional law. He is currently a member of the Legal Intersections Research Centre.

Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara famously claimed that ‘the true revolutionary is guided by great feelings of love’. This article contends that the emotional constituents of Guevara’s political and legal thought have played an essential role in the cultural configuration of his political myth. In the wake of the global financial crisis, they also seem to be quite relevant for our current understanding of society and law. As law and myth are synonymous with the symbolic order, Guevara’s myth constitutes an outstanding case to dissect the passionate ingredients that the perception of injustice introduces in the symbolic order. The emotions that saturate Guevara’s writings and revolutionary actions – love for justice, hatred of injustice – relentlessly challenge and undermine the intersections between law and inequality in Latin America. Guevara’s wrath, however, could hardly be contained within this region today. In a world in which the gap between poor and rich people is continuously deepening, it seems convenient to be at least aware of the canvas behind Guevara’s legal and political thought, which constitutes one of the most powerful social imaginaries that have been erected around law’s contribution to the unequal distribution of income, capital and political standing.

(2016) 34(1) Law in Context p89

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