The decomposition of the political state and the emergence of the narco state in three Mexican novels (1969-2008)
Detective Novel, Narco State, Paco Ignacio Taibo II, Rafael Bernal, Élmer Mendoza
Differing from the closed narrative of the whodunit, género negro fiction favors the open textuality of the hardboiled, where content and themes critically codify social and historical contexts. Given this frame of reference, this essay analyzes three representative detective novels of the last fifty years as works of ambiguity and irony that criticize and reinterpret Mexico's changing society: Rafael Bernal's El complot mongol casts a cynical eye on the weaknesses of the so-called Mexican "miracle;" Paco Ignacio Taibo's No habrá final feliz questions police-directed violence against a rebellious populace whose repression exhibits the nation's "revolutionary" mythology; and Élmer Mendoza's Balas de plata encodes the patent crisis of an emergent narco state characterized by unheard-of violence, dubious morality, and social paranoia. In a concluding note, Edgar Allan Poe's and Jorge Luis Borges's short stories are presented as whodunit counter-examples that anticipate the open narrative of género negro.
Ruiz, E. (2019). The decomposition of the political state and the emergence of the narco state in three Mexican novels (1969-2008). Transmodernity, 9 (1), 35-54. https://doi.org/10.5070/T491044219