Writing as a Magical Act: Tracing Histories of Violence and Cocaine in Colombia

Date of Original Version



Book Review

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Abstract or Description

Two of Michael Taussig’s most recent books, My Cocaine Museum and Law in a Lawless Land: Diary of a Limpieza in Colombia, compellingly evoke life and landscape in the Valle del Cauca region of Colombia. They provide an insightful if bleak picture of the inner workings of terror and violence. Each experiments with a different form of writing to engage with questions of the state, history, power, and narration. Synthesizing concerns elaborated in Taussig’s earlier works, these books are innovative in their style and sophisticated in their analytic content.




Published In

PoLAR: Political and Legal Anthropology Review, 31, 2, 356-359.