Drug Cartels Do Not Exist
Narcotrafficking in US and Mexican Culture
Yet the realities of violence in Mexico and along the border are obscured by the books, films, and TV series we consume. In truth, works like Sicario, The Queen of the South, and Narcos hide Mexico's political realities. Alongside these examples, Zavala discusses Charles Bowden, 2666 by Roberto Bolaño, and other important Latin American writers as examples of those who do capture the realities of the drug war.
Translated into English by William Savinar, Drug Cartels Do Not Exist will be useful for journalists, political scientists, philosophers, and writers of any kind who wish to break down the constructed barriers—physical and mental—created by those in power around the reality of the Mexican drug trade.
Chapter 1: Narco Culture Depoliticized
Chapter 2: Drug Cartels Do Not Exist (but State Violence Does)
Chapter 3: Four Writers Subverting the Narco Narrative
Chapter 4: Drug Trafficking, Soldiers, and Police on the Border
Epilogue: The New "Cartel War" Is Not New, nor a War, nor between Cartels
Afterword for the English Edition
"Spend enough time with [Oswaldo Zavala], talk about the drug trade long enough, and, more likely than not, you'll come to realize that most of what you know about it is a myth."
—Freddy Martínez, Remezcla
"A fascinating mix of journalism and academic analysis."
—Niamh Thornton, author of Tastemakers and Tastemaking: Mexico and Curated Screen Violence