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Georg M. Holfelder

Photo_GeorgHolfelder
Image Credit: Santiago Engelhardt

International Research Training Group 'Temporalities of Future in Latin America'

Dynamics of Aspiration and Anticipation

PhD Candidate

Project: "Fatal News – Anti-Press Violence and the Regulation of Information Flows towards the Mexican Public"

Address
Boltzmannstr. 4
14195 Berlin

Education

Since 05/2019

PhD student, International Research Training Group ‘Temporalities of Future’, Freie Universität Berlin

10/2014 – 02/2019

Master in Interdisciplinary Latin American Studies, Freie Universität Berlin, M.A. Thesis: "The Perpetual Reconfiguration of Violent Networks - A Case Study of the Clan del Golfo in Colombia”

09/2006 – 08/2007

Studies with ERASMUS in Spanish Philology at the Universitat de Barcelona

09/2003 – 08/2011

Magister Studies in Romance Literature, Economics and Social Anthropology, Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg; M.A. Thesis: "Die Literatur des Boom Latinoamericano im Hinblick auf Umberto Eco's 'Das offene Kunstwerk'"

 Work Experience

Since 05/2019

Researcher, International Research Training Group ‘Temporalities of Future’, Berlin

10/2018 – 04/2019

Student Assistant, Institute for Latin American Studies, Department of Political Science - Prof. Dr. Marianne Braig, Freie Universität Berlin

09/2017 – 12/2018

Freelance Student Assistant, International Research Training Group ‘Entre Espacios’, Freie Universität Berlin

05/2017 – 09/2018

Freelance Student Assistant, German-Colombian Peace Institute CAPAZ, Freie Universität Berlin

10/2015 – 03/2016

Intership, desiguALdades.net Research Network, Freie Universität Berlin

05/2015 – 03/2017

Student Assistant, Centre for Rural Development, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

04/2014 – 09/2014

Assistant Manager, Fräulein Burger GmbH, Berlin

10/2013 – 03/2014

Product Manager, deinPhone GmbH, Berlin

11/2012 – 06/2013

Internship, Drieschner Media GmbH, Berlin

01/2012 – 04/2012

Internship, Sports For Development, Santa Marta

08/2011 – 12/2011

Internship, regioactive.de, Mannheim

Project: "Fatal News – Anti-Press Violence and the Regulation of Information Flows towards the Mexican Public"


Supervisors:
Prof. Dr. Marianne Braig, Freie Universität Berlin
Prof. Dr. Renata Campos Motta, Freie Universität Berlin


In Mexico, controlling the media through violence has been part and parcel of the strategies employed by powerful actors to regulate the flow of information towards the public since at least the 1980s. However, with the end of the PRI’s 71 years of rule in 2000 and the militarization of the War on Drugs in 2006, threats and attacks against journalists and media workers by state and non-state actors continues to intensify. This phenomenon exhibits spatial variations on the subnational level differing from the patterns of violence targeting the general population. Furthermore, public officials – particularly from the state and municipal level – are responsible for at least half of the threats and attacks. At the same time, impunity is almost absolute in spite of special national-level legislation and institutions designed to protect journalists, monitor attacks, and prosecute the attackers. This project analyzes, how the targeting of journalists and media workers by powerful state and non-state actors through different forms of violence regulates flows of information towards the public. It focuses on how perpetrators, types of violence, and intensity vary between different federal entities, and how they translate to censorship. Thus, the project analyzes how these dynamics contribute to the formation of systems of order on the subnational level that regulate about which issues and topics information is made available to the public

In following these research questions, the project aspires to contribute to a better understanding of the relationship between the proliferation of subnational authoritarian systems, parastatal orders and the disproportionate and spatially varying vulnerability of media workers in Mexico. The project is based on data generated through qualitative content analysis of semi-structured interviews, following a questionnaire asking how different types of violence employed by distinct actors affect how and what kind of information is reproduced by the media. Potential interview partners are media workers, stakeholders in local, national and international NGOs as well as institutional representatives from the state, federal and international level. Individual cases will be supplemented and extended on through archival research.

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