Sociopolitical Analysis of Anti-Drug Policies in Mexico: The Case of Felipe Calderón’s Drug War

Erkoç, Zeynep
This thesis explores the interwoven relationship between the notion of institutionalization, the discourse of failed state, and the concepts of social exclusion and subculture particularly within the context of Mexico's escalating fragility debates. Through an examination of Calderón's drug war through a socio-political analysis, this study underscores the significance of understanding the sociological dimensions of political and social institutionalization processes of nation-states. Furthermore, by highlighting the role of institutionalization in state failures and emphasizing the need to consider social context alongside political and economic aspects, the study reveals the impact of subcultural patterns within the scope of social exclusion on the instability of nation-states. Hence, the study concludes that the narco-trafficking subculture in Mexico can complement societal shortcomings, leading to a 'hidden state' phenomenon. Moreover, the political analysis conducted in this study reveals that the primary failure of the Mexican state lies in its neglect of the social sphere and its misinterpretation of the interconnected relationship between DTOs (Drug Trafficking Organizations) and the state. Therefore, the conclusion of this thesis advocates for recognizing the interplay between DTOs and the state, grounded in sociological foundations, and underscores the importance of fieldwork to unravel the complexities of Mexican DTOs' intertwined relationship with the state and society.
Citation Formats
Z. Erkoç, “Sociopolitical Analysis of Anti-Drug Policies in Mexico: The Case of Felipe Calderón’s Drug War,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2023.