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Who are the narcos asking? Emancipation and justice in drug culture in Mexico
- Jose Carlos G. Aguiar
DInce the 1990s, drug culture in Mexico has been studied as the symbolic repertoire of the “criminal town” that portrays the daily life of drug traffickers. Their expressions are understood as a reliable record of the traffickers' lives, with a transgressive aesthetic that presents excess and ostentation as forms of domination. In this article, forms of spiritual protection among drug traffickers are studied in order to debate the narcoculture. The ethnographic material was collected between 2014 and 2017 in the states of Hidalgo and Michoacán, through participant observations and in-depth interviews. The protection of popular saints such as Santa Muerte, Angelito Negro and San Nazario, allows us to understand how narcoculture is a resource for social emancipation, legitimizing the definitions of justice and sovereignty of organized crime.