Bearing Witness: Bruce Cockburn’s Cultural Interventions in Central America

Albert Braz


Bruce Cockburn, who is one of Canada’s preeminent singer-songwriters, devoted his early work largely to the personal, notably the spiritual, even becoming known as “that Christian singer.” But largely in response to the brutal Central American wars of the 1980s, he gradually surmised that a living art cannot evade the political. The numerous songs that Cockburn wrote about those conflicts, which reflect his determination to become a witness rather than a mere bystander, have become testaments to his desire to document the suffering of multitudes of people that lacked the power (or opportunity) to articulate it.


Bruce Cockburn. Singer-songwriters. Witnessing. Canada. Central America.

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ISSN eletrônico: 1984-5677

ISSN impresso: 1519-0994