Globalist Gangsters: Reading Mexican Drug Cartels and Russian Organized Crime

By Alexandar Mihailovic.

Published by The Humanities Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In Russia, the openly opportunistic political orientation of Putinism emphasizes the rule of law and tight control of the media and popular culture while condoning myriad forms of systemic illegality. Within Mexico, the drug cartels represent a virtual form of a second or even surrogate government in several regions, a potent (and at times romanticized) voice of local power lubricated by the liquid capital of drug money. Certainly the Sinaloan cartels and the Russian “Brothers Within the Law” (vory v zakone) have facilitated the flow of illegal workers and commodities across immediate borders, with traceable ripples elsewhere within the global marketplace. I will examine the striking ways in which state patrimonialism mirrors the distinctive configuration of organized crime within both countries, as reflected in autobiographical writing and pop music genres that claim to express the perspective of organized crime workers.

Keywords: Globalization, Crime, Mexico, Russia

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 9, Issue 6, pp.153-164. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 764.531KB).

Alexandar Mihailovic

Professor of Russian and Comparative Literature, Department of Comparative Literature, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY, USA

Alexandar Mihailovic is Professor Emeritus of Russian and Comparative Literature at Hofstra University. His books include Corporeal Words: Mikhail Bakhtin’s Theology of Discourse (Northwestern University Press, 1997) and the edited volume Tchaikovsky and His Contemporaries: A Centenary Symposium (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1999). He has published articles about Orthodox theology and literary theory, nineteenth-and twentieth-century Russian and Ukrainian literature, cultural relations during the Cold War, Russian popular music, African-American studies, contemporary Russian painters, and the current struggle for LGBT rights in Russia. He has translated Russian literature and literary criticism, and is currently finishing a book project on the St. Petersburg-based group of artists and writers known as the mit’ki.

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