The global entertainment industry and collective memory of violence

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Tourists come and go from the House of Memory Museum (a project inside the Victim Assistance Program of Medellin City Hall). Meanwhile, the victims remain. Photo: D. R. Goyes.

This project examines what happens to memories of suffering and atrocities when they become part of the global entertainment industry.

About the project

Collective memories of atrocities are often a fractured and disputed terrain. Medellin was in the 1980s and early 1990s one of the most violent cities in the world. This project examines the city’s understanding of its past and examines among other how TV and cinematic representations such as Narcos and other similar entertainment products generate collective memory and contribute to its evolution.

By narrating and re‐narrating the past the global entertainment industry is turning the history of violence into a profitable economy, visible also in the growth of dark tourism, and is thus shaping and reshaping not only the memories of the past but also the present nature of the city.


The project examines various media representations of violence in Medellín, together with city tours and museums and attempts of citizens and city authorities of to create alternative stories and memories of the city.

It is based on fieldwork in Medellín, content analysis of relevant media representations, as well as interviews with the city’s inhabitants.


The project is funded by the University of Oslo.

See also / Mire tambien

The projects web pages in Spanish/ La página web del proyecto en español

Published May 26, 2020 4:10 PM - Last modified Oct. 28, 2020 3:07 PM