From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Escrache against genocidal Videla in 2006. In Spanish, no subtitles

Escrache is the name given in Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and Spain[1] to a type of demonstration in which a group of activists go to the homes or workplaces of those whom they want to condemn and publicly humiliate in order to influence decision makers and governments into a certain course of action. This term was born in Argentina in 1995 and has since spread to other Spanish-speaking countries.

In Chile these actions are known as funa. In Peru they are known as roche and are often signed "El roche".[2][3]

The word was coined for political usage in 1995 by the human rights group HIJOS, to condemn the genocides committed by members of the PROCESO who were pardoned by Carlos Menem.

By 2013, the term was in wide use in Spain,[citation needed] to define the direct action protests of the Plataforma de Afectados por la Hipoteca.[4][5]

Origin of the term[edit]

The lunfardo term "escracho" has been used for some time in Río de la Plata. It was mentioned by Benigno B. Lugones in 1879 referring to a scam in which a lottery ticket supposedly naming the victim is presented to them and they are asked to pay to receive it, for an amount which is inferior to the amount they have "won" in the lottery.[6] Escrache might also have come from the Genoese synonym for a photo "scraccé",[7] "scraccé" also passed to mean make a portrait, or more recently to smash someone's face in.[8] Another proposed origin is the English to scratch (the tickets used in the lottery scam were scratched to modify the number) or the Italian scaracio meaning spit.[9]

The term came into wider use in 1995 by the human rights group HIJOS, when Carlos Menem pardoned members of the Proceso de Reorganización Nacional who were accused of human rights violations and genocide. Using chants, music, graffiti, banners, throwing eggs, street theater, etc., they inform neighbors of the presence of criminals in the neighborhood.


  1. ^
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ [2]
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ Gobello, José: Lunfardía. Introducción al estudio del lenguaje porteño pág. 18 Buenos Aires 1953 Ed. Argos
  7. ^ According to Linguist Roberto Bein
  8. ^ Teruggi, Mario E.: Panorama del lunfardo 2* edición pág. 192 Buenos Aires 1978 Editorial Sudamericana
  9. ^ Teruggi

External links[edit]