Nov 10, 2022 • 42M

The Making of the Narco Narrative: A Podcast with Oswaldo Zavala

An examination of official discourse and the cartel narrative, the national security paradigm, and the drug war as a policy of extermination.

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Appears in this episode

Todd Miller
The Border Chronicle podcast is hosted by Melissa del Bosque and Todd Miller. Based in Tucson, Arizona, longtime journalists Melissa and Todd speak with fascinating fronterizos, community leaders, activists, artists and more at the U.S.-Mexico border.
Episode details

For today’s podcast, The Border Chronicle welcomes back Oswaldo Zavala to discuss his new book, The War Within the Words: An Intellectual History of the “Narco” in Mexico (1975–2020). In this discussion, Zavala examines and disassembles drug war narratives in official discourse and mainstream storytelling, both in news media and fictional accounts.


Zavala, a Juarense professor of Latin American literature, directly challenges entrenched and preconceived ideas—as he did last year, when we had him on the podcast to discuss his first book, Drug Cartels Do Not Exist. Zavala’s provocative work ultimately offers a new understanding of the drug war and a way to challenge what he calls “a policy of extermination.”

Author Oswaldo Zavala

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