UCL Institute of the Americas


Dr María de Vecchi

Vivxs lxs Queremos! The Battles for Memory around the Disappeared in Mexico


PhD Completed in 2018 | > UCL Discovery - open access


Professor Kevin Middlebrook and Professor Paulo Drinot

Dr Maria de Vecchi
This thesis analysed the battles for memory around the disappeared in Mexico by comparing the two main periods of disappearances, this is the period between the 1960s-1980s and that from the mid-2000s onwards. Following a critical ethnography methodology with a psychosocial approach the thesis analyses memory realms (dates, categories used to name disappearances and memorials) created by memory entrepreneurs. The thesis focuses mainly on seven organisations of relatives of the disappeared. The contexts of the two periods mark the battles for memory. In the first period, framed by the government’s attack on political opponents, the relatives emphasised the state’s responsibility in the disappearances, and insisted on the liberation of the disappeared. The response of state actors was marked by denial and silence. The transitional justice measures taken during the change of government in 2000 perpetrated impunity and silence about disappearances.