Narratives from the Margins of the State: Resisting the Politics of Exceptionality in Comuna 13

24 Pages Posted: 25 Oct 2018 Last revised: 18 Dec 2018

Date Written: October 19, 2018

Abstract

English abstract: This article questions the implementation of the “state of exception” in marginal urban areas of Colombia. In so doing, it takes as a case study the military operations carried out in 2002, in Comuna 13, an urban district of Medellín. More than a decade after these military operations, communities whose lives were significantly affected by the operations have denounced the commission of an important number of human rights violations in the Comuna. These human rights violations, which include inter-urban displacements and Enforced Disappearances (ED) occurred after the so-called securitisation of the neighbourhood and challenge the notion of security that underpins “state of exception” policies. The overall aim of the article is to highlight the importance of the narratives of resistance that contest the implementation of state of exception policies. These narratives urge us to think beyond the “friend or foe” logic that has justified military interventions of past decades in urban areas of the Global South.

Spanish abstract: Este artículo cuestiona la implementación del “estado de excepción” en las zonas marginales de las ciudades colombianas. Para tal propósito, se analiza la militarización de la Comuna 13 en el 2002. El estudio de caso ilustra cómo después de una década de la militarización del distrito urbano, las comunidades sobrevivientes han denunciado violaciones de derechos humanos ocurridas después de la llamada “securitización” de la Comuna en el 2002. Las violaciones incluyen desplazamiento intraurbano y varios casos de desaparición forzada. Esta situación supone una crítica a la idea de seguridad que fundamenta la política del estado de excepción. El objetivo es destacar la importancia de las narrativas de resistencia que confrontan la implementación del estado de excepción. Estas narrativas nos exhortan a pensar más allá de la lógica “amigo-enemigo” la cual ha justificado intervenciones militares en zonas urbanas del sur global en las últimas décadas.

Keywords: State of exception, enforced disappearances, transitional justice, narratives of resistance, Estado de Excepción, desaparición forzada, justicia transicional, narrativas de resistencia

Suggested Citation

Rojas-Páez, Gustavo, Narratives from the Margins of the State: Resisting the Politics of Exceptionality in Comuna 13 (October 19, 2018). Oñati Socio-Legal Series, vol. 8, n. 6 (2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3269746

Gustavo Rojas-Páez (Contact Author)

Universidad Libre, Bogotá ( email )

Carrera 66A Nº 53 - 40
Bogotá, DC Distrito Capital
Colombia

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