Activity: Talk or presentation types › Invited talk
'Ciudad Juarez - When Reality Becomes Fiction'
Notorious in the world’s media for femicide, gangs, drug trafficking, police corruption, illegal border crossing and the maquila industry Ciudad Juárez has been the subject of documentaries, art exhibitions and testimonio accounts. Much cultural production about the border has been the work of human rights activists and academics working to improve conditions in the city and heighten international awareness with a view to bringing pressure to bear on the Mexican government. Strikingly, however, Ciudad Juárez is increasingly being used as the setting for contemporary popular fiction written in English. Recent examples include: The Dead Women of Juarez by Sam Hawken, Lost in Juarez by Douglas Lindsay, The Crossing by Gary Paulsen, In the Shadows of Juárez: Victim 213 by Kathleen Smith O’Donnell and Vampires of Ciudad Juárez by Clanash Farjeon. This paper analyses fictional representations of events in Ciudad Juárez written in English to try to understand the current fascination with the city and explore how these texts negotiate a line between consciousness-raising and exploitation.