Gubernamentalidad y Construcción de Sentidos de Ciudadanía y Criminalidad en la Narcoliteratura
Romero Montano, Luz
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Romero Montano, Luz
In this dissertation, I argue against the idea that literary works that portray drug-trafficking, or “narconovelas,” are mere apologias for drug-trafficking and governing failures unique to Colombia and Mexico. In order to problematize that statement, it is necessary to understand how drug-trafficking and its policies started, changed over time, and came to shape our contemporary practices of citizenship and our sense of justice. Drawing on Foucault’s concept of “governmentality”, I argue that a political reading of narconovelas will help us to rethink categories of governmentality such as governed subjectivities, governed bodies and inhabited spaces. In narconovelas, these categories reveal the construction of a criminal otherness, which is portrayed as antagonistic to an ideal middle-class model of citizen. In other words, readers of “narconovelas” do not learn about “narcoculture” or drug-trafficking but paradoxically about the markers of a middle-class citizen: “well spoken,” educated, able to control his/her own pleasures, conservatively dressed, and responsive to the disciplining of security dispositifs. In the first part of this dissertation, I explain how the opium policies and wars in China during the 19th century as well as the colonialist efforts of the United States established a precedent for the governing of drugs on a global level. Colombian and Mexican governing of drugs is linked not only to that precedent but also to the neoliberal ways of the governing of drugs. The second part of this work contains the literary analysis. I found that feminine subjectivities are constructed by highlighting the differences between a middle-class woman and a subaltern woman, and the body of the criminal is constructed based on distinctions of social class; in addition, the micro-politics for the representation of bodies derive from the colonial assumption that bodies can be owned, abused and disposed. I also found that narconovelas reverse our understanding of the center and the periphery; some novels even depict a transforming sense of citizenship by reimaging the inhabited spaces. With this work, I demonstrate that cultural production and in particular the narconovelas reinforce, challenge or remain ambiguous to the various biases that shape contemporary categories of governmentality such as gender, body and space. This dissertation is written in Spanish.