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On-line version ISSN 1807-5762
DIAZ DEL CASTILLO, Adriana; OLARTE SIERRA, María Fernanda and PEREZ-BUSTOS, Tania. Modest witnesses and invisible populations in media coverage of human genetics in Colombia. Interface (Botucatu) [online]. 2012, vol.16, n.41, pp.451-467. ISSN 1807-5762. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1414-32832012000200013.
In this paper we explore the ways in which mass media present -and co-produce- human genetic research in Colombia, reproducing certain standardized discourses about science which are cross-cut by gender and race. For this, we conducted an ethnographic analysis of media coverage of human genetics (both population and forensic) in two of the major media in Colombia between 1992-2006 (newspaper) and 2009-2010 (TV news). Our argument is two-fold. First we show that media present genetic science as unique/uniform/objective/neutral/heroic. Second, media present subjects as simultaneously marked and unmarked in terms of race, gender, class, and geography. We conclude by arguing that this mechanism reproduces and mobilizes the ideal of mestizaje as a nation-building ideology in Colombia.
Keywords : Modestwitness; Humangenetics; Media; Mestizo; Cultural anthropology.