Regnar Kristensen

9 Dangerous corpses in Mexico’s drug war Regnar Kristensen On 16 December 2009, 400 heavily armed soldiers from the Mexican marine forces entered an enclosed residential zone in the city of Cuernavaca to arrest the drug baron Beltrán Leyva, leader of the Mexican drug cartel of the same name. He was classified as the most violent drug cartel leader on the planet by the American Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), and as an extremely dangerous enemy of the fatherland by the Mexican president, Felipe Calderón. For several hours, the marines were engaged in heavy

in Governing the dead
Ernesto Schwartz-Marin and Arely Cruz-Santiago

The article will present the findings of ethnographic research into the Colombian and Mexican forensic systems, introducing the first citizen-led exhumation project made possible through the cooperation of scholars, forensic specialists and interested citizens in Mexico. The coupling evolution and mutual re-constitution of forensic science will be explored, including new forms of citizenship and nation building projects – all approached as lived experience – in two of Latin America‘s most complex contexts: organised crime and mass death.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal
Ana María Carrillo

5 Vaccine production, national security anxieties and the unstable state in nineteenth- and twentieth-century Mexico Ana María Carrillo Introduction Since pre-Columbian times, Mexico has experienced notable periods of progress in science and technology. Political, economic and social problems have, however, often interrupted these developments, thus the country has been forced to rebuild

in The politics of vaccination
Roxana Ferllini

This article presents an account of the involvement of forensic anthropology in the investigation of human rights abuses in the modern era, and the difficulties it faces with respect to lack of adequate funding, volatile settings, the presence of unexploded ordnance, corruption in governmental agencies and a lack of good will, absence of support for NGOs and the curtailment of formal judicial proceedings to effect transitional justice. Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Spain, Mexico and the Northern Triangle are provided as regional examples of the problems encountered when attempting to conduct forensic anthropological investigations to locate mass graves, retrieve victims and obtain proper identifications. Interventions by various organisations are highlighted to illustrate their assistance to forensic and non-forensic individuals through technical support, training and mentoring in the areas of crime-scene management and identification techniques. Interventions in mass-grave processing when state agencies have failed, the importance of DNA banks and information from family members and witnesses are also presented.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal
Open Access (free)
Architecture, Building and Humanitarian Innovation
Tom Scott-Smith

, B. ( 1964 ), Architecture without Architects: A Short Introduction to Non-pedigreed Architecture ( Albuquerque, NM : University of New Mexico Press ). Rudofsky , B. ( 1969 ), Streets for People: A Primer for Americans ( Garden City, NY : Doubleday ). Ruskin , J. ( 1871 ), Selections from the Writings of

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Negotiating sovereign claims in Oaxacan post-mortem repatriation
Lars Ove Trans

5 Travelling corpses: negotiating sovereign claims in Oaxacan post-mortem repatriation Lars Ove Trans This chapter explores the process of death and repatriation of a Mexican migrant, Jacinto, from his home in Los Angeles to his native village of San Pedro Yalehua, a Zapotec Indian community located in the Sierra Juárez mountain range in the southern state of Oaxaca.1 In this process, Jacinto’s close relatives suddenly find themselves in a situation where they have to navigate the claims of various different authorities representing states (local and federal

in Governing the dead
Open Access (free)
Jenny Edkins

; searching for remains that can be identified. At the same time, the missing person’s room is often kept ready, their possessions pristine, a note on the door in case they should return. When the person has gone missing as a result of enforced disappearance, there is a third imperative: holding the authorities to account, demanding their co-operation, exposing their culpability, and seeking justice. In this chapter, I examine two particular forms that this demand for justice has taken, both in Mexico, where disappearances are ongoing, not in the past. First, I look at a

in Change and the politics of certainty
Open Access (free)
Sovereignty and the politics of dead bodies
Editor: Finn Stepputat

This book looks at sovereignty as a particular form of power and politics. It shows that the fate of bodies in the transition from life to death can provide a key to understanding fundamental ways in which sovereignty is claimed and performed. The contributions analyse (post-)conflict as well as non-conflict contexts, which too often are studied in isolation from one another. Focusing on contemporary issues rather than the equally important historical dimensions, they all grapple with the questions of who governs the dead bodies, how, why and with what effects. The book analyses how dead bodies are placed and dealt with in spaces between competing, overlapping and nested sovereign orders, under normal as well as exceptional conditions. It looks at contributions that draw on psychoanalysis, critical theory, the structuralist-functionalist anthropology of burial rituals and recent ideas of agency and materiality. The book first explains the efforts of states to contain and separate out dead bodies in particular sites. It explores the ways in which such efforts of containment are negotiated and contested in struggles between different entities that claim the dead bodies. The book then shows how entities that claim sovereignty produce effects of sovereignty by challenging and transgressing the laws regarding the legitimate use of violence and how dead bodies should be treated with dignity.

Experiences from higher education institutions
Felix M. Bivens

covered in detail are: the Master’s in Participation (MAP) at the UK’s Institute of Development Studies (IDS), and the Community University Partnership Programme at the University of Brighton (CUPP), the outreach programme at Sewanee, University of the South (US), and the Programa de Investigación Interdisciplinario Desrarrollo Humano en Chiapas (Interdisciplinary Research Programme on Human Development in Chiapas) at the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (UAM), Mexico. In addition to the review of these four programmes, there will be some shorter examples of

in Knowledge, democracy and action
Why China survived the financial crisis
Shalendra D. Sharma

into complacency. It seems they have grasped the essential lesson, the so-called “paradox” of the Asian financial crisis: that strong macroeconomic fundamentals, while necessary, are not always sufficient for averting currency crises or providing immunity from virulent contagions. Acutely aware of their economy’s underlying structural weaknesses, they remain deeply concerned. As the next section shows, their concerns are not misplaced. The economy: underlying weaknesses An important lesson of Mexico’s peso crisis of 1994 and the Asian financial crisis was that a sound

in The Asian financial crisis