For two years, Clemencia Rodr\u00edguez did fieldwork in regions of Colombia where leftist guerillas, right-wing paramilitary groups, the army, and drug traffickers made their presence felt in the lives of unarmed civilians. Here, Rodr\u00edguez tells the story of the ways in which people living in the shadow of these armed intruders use community radio, television, video, digital photography, and the Internet to shield their communities from armed violence\u2019s negative impacts. Citizens\u2019 media are most effective, Rodr\u00edguez posits, when they understand communication as performance rather than simply as persuasion or the transmission of information. Grassroots media that are deeply embedded in the communities they serve and responsive to local needs strengthen the ability of community members to productively react to violent incursions. Rodr\u00edguez demonstrates how citizens\u2019 media privilege aspects of community life not hijacked by violence, providing people with the tools and the platform to forge lives for themselves and their families that are not entirely colonized by armed conflict and its effects. Ultimately, Rodr\u00edguez shows that unarmed civilian communities that have been cornered by armed conflict can use community media to repair torn social fabrics, reconstruct eroded bonds, reclaim public spaces, resolve conflict, and sow the seeds of peace and stability.
Publisher: University of Minnesota Press
Number of pages: 336
Dimensions: 216 x 140 x 25 mm
"Clemencia Rodriguez has given us an astonishing ethnographic study of `citizens' media' in Colombia. Remarkably, and with great insight into what uses of such `small media' can accomplish, she offers readers a glimmer of hope in a stark war-torn social landscape, as well as a welcome and original intervention into contemporary theorizations of media worlds in circumstances of violence." -Faye Ginsburg, New York University