Domesticating the ghost : constellations of Mexico, 1968
Author(s)Sanzgiri, James Suneil
Constellations of Mexico, 1968
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Architecture.
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Organized primarily as an essayistic method of investigation to accompany and supplement my thirty-minute short film AT THE TOP OF GRASSHOPPER'S HILL, this thesis traces minor encounters or discrepant engagements¹ between myself and and images of the 1968 state-sponsored student massacre in Mexico City. I adopt these engagements, most of which exist as encounters within state-sponsored institutions, to take 1968 and the Tlatelolco Massacre as a point of departure with which to navigate the density of such questions and problems as the production of collective memory, cultural heritage, disappearance, the archive, history and authority, and above all how power and knowledge function within a hegemonic terrain. Through an analysis of the many manifestations of images surrounding the 1968 student massacre, including Hollywood-esqe adaptations and 16mm documentation of the event by the military themselves, I explore the role representation plays in political struggles as well as its potential co-optation by the state. Such co-optation I argue, perpetuates cycles of oppression that maintain the status quo; and within Mexico specifically, the nearly ninety-year rule of the PRI party. At its essence, this thesis pries open the inconsistencies of such representations within Mexico, 1968 and its aftermath. These questions are sparked by my long term considerations of theorists such as Walter Benjamin, Paul Virilio, and Michel Foucault. I have found my investigations within Mexico indicative of their writings among a range of others that appear in this text. As such, this essayistic exploration stretches and drifts across many different disciplines, geographies, and figures. Thus, I develop a "constellatory framework" to expand an analysis of technologies of reproduction themselves towards their facility to impact national memory through circulation.
Thesis: S.M. in Art, Culture and Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Architecture, 2017.This electronic version was submitted by the student author. The certified thesis is available in the Institute Archives and Special Collections.Cataloged from student-submitted PDF version of thesis. Page 96 blank.Includes bibliographical references (pages 93-95).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Architecture.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology