Heavy hand, sunken spirit: Mexico at war

Heavy Hand, Sunken Spirit is an ongoing project about the societal costs and consequences of Mexico’s violent drug war. It frames the violence as a symptom, as opposed to the problem, and one of a variety of symptoms that will haunt the country for generations. This country is in the midst of a “conflict” in every sense of the word, and when documenting this conflict it is important not to reduce what is happening to a series of nearly anonymous images of carnage that could be happening anywhere.

The wounds of this war bleed into every corner of the country, staining the very fabric of Mexican life with violence, death and fear. The psychology of the country is also changing, as people become accustomed to horror and distrust, weakening an already fragile democracy. I am most fascinated by the space between what Mexico has always been and what this carnage is creating. The heat of the conflict is melting two worlds together, making a singular Mexico defined as much by violence and tension as by history and culture.

Photographer: David Rochkind.
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