Eduardo Montes-Bradley - Early Life

Early Life

Montes-Bradley was born in Córdoba, Argentina the second of two sons to Nelson Montes-Bradley, founder of Discos Qualiton and Sara Kaplan, born into a family of secular Jewish immigrants from Poland and Bessarabia. The family name Montes-Bradley is the result of the union of two ancestors in 1893: Juan A. Montes Ziegler of Galician and German descent, and Elvira Bradley, descendant of Thomas Osgood Bradley of Haverhill, Massachusetts. In 1961 the family relocated to Rosario, 250 miles east of Córdoba and the second largest city in Argentina. By 1965 they are living in Buenos Aires. The cultural ambiance in the capital city and the relationship of the family with the arts were crucial during his formative years. He attended public school, was brought up agnostic and atheist in a progressive, predominantly left-wing radical environment. In 1973 Montes-Bradley enters High School at the Colegio Nacional Avellaneda. May 25, 1973, marked the end a long period of military rule. General Alejandro Agustín Lanusse steps down as president and Héctor José Cámpora is elected on a Peronist ballot. Shortly after Héctor Campora's inauguration, former president and founder of the Peronist Party, General Juan Domingo Perón returned from exile in Madrid where he spent eighteen years under the protection of Generalisimo Francisco Franco. On September 11, 1973 Salvador Allende is overthrown in a bloody military coup led by General Augusto Pinochet in neighboring Chile. It was a time of profound political turmoil. Montes-Bradley became involved as a student in political activism. The deaths of Pablo Picasso, Pablo Casals, Pablo Neruda and Víctor Jara, all of which also occurred in 1973, had a profound impact in an entire generation. Montes-Bradley will frequently recall 1973 as turning point: "Not because of anything that I might have believed on then, which I most certainly don't believe in now, convictions come and go; but because of the extraordinary experience of living in a home full of music and poetry within the boundaries of a country at the brink Civil War." Three years later, General Jorge Rafael Videla ousted General Peron's third wife and his widow inaugurating a new era of terror which resulted in the death of thousands, thousands more joining the ranks of the desaparecidos and thousands forced into exile.

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