The University of Wisconsin Press

Human Rights / Art / Cultural Studies / Politics / International Studies


The Art of Truth-Telling about Authoritarian Rule
Edited by Ksenija Bilbija, Jo Ellen Fair, Cynthia E. Milton,
and Leigh A. Payne

A global examination of artistic responses to authoritarian rule

Special interest honor book, American Association of School Libraries and Public Library Association

People who have lived through authoritarian rule have stories to tell, truths that have been silenced. But how do individuals begin to speak about a political past that was too horrible for words? How is truth best voiced in a society moving out of authoritarianism? This generously illustrated volume examines the creation of stories, accounts, images, songs, street theater, paintings, and ideas that pay witness to authoritarian pasts in Nigeria, South Africa, Argentina, Chile, Guatemala, Cambodia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, Bosnia, Serbia, and Croatia. This theme is explored with contributions by scholars, activists, and artists. By examining the past, they hope to teach us to avoid repeating these atrocities.

Ksenija Bilbija is professor of Spanish at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and author of Yo soy trampa. Jo Ellen Fair is professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at UW–Madison and editor of African Issues. Cynthia E. Milton is assistant professor of history at the Université de Montréal and author of the forthcoming book The Many Meanings of Poverty. Leigh Payne is professor of political science at UW–Madison and author of Uncivil Movements.

photo of editor Bilbija shows a woman with long brown hair. She has a pearl necklace. photo of editor Fair shows a woman with short brown hair outside with a background of trees. photo of editor Milton shows a woman with long brown hair, in an office, with a green sweater. photo of editor Payne shows a woman with redish hair dressed in black.

 Ksenija Bilbija

 Jo Ellen Fair

 Cynthia E. Milton

 Leigh A. Payne

Media & bookseller inquiries regarding review copies, events, and interviews can be directed to the publicity department at or (608) 263-0734. (If you want to examine a book for possible course use, please see our Course Books page. If you want to examine a book for possible rights licensing, please see Rights & Permissions.)

cover of Art of Truth-Telling is photocollage of two women with evocative faces

April 2005
136 pp. 8 1/2 x 11
245 color & 87 b/w illustrations

Book icon
Paper $24.95 s
ISBN 978-0-299-20904-9
Book icon
Cloth $60.00 s
ISBN 978-0-299-20900-1
Shopping cart ADD TO CART
  Review cart contents
Secure checkout

"A most worthwhile undertaking."
—Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Home | Books | Journals | Events | Textbooks | Authors | Related | Search | Order | Contact

If you have trouble accessing any page in this web site, contact our Web manager.

Updated June 25, 2012

© 2012, The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System