Principal Investigator

Silvana Mandolessi

Silvana Mandolessi is Professor of Cultural Studies at KU Leuven.

She is the author of Una literatura abyecta. Gombrowicz en la tradición argentina (Brill, 2012), and co-editor of Transnational Memory in the Hispanic World (a special issue of the European Review, 2014), Estudios sobre memoria. Perspectivas actuales y nuevos escenarios (Eduvim, 2015), El pasado inasequible. Desaparecidos, hijos y combatientes en el arte y la literatura del nuevo milenio (Eudeba, 2017), and Sujetos, territorios y culturas en tránsito.

Dimensiones de lo transnacional en la cultura hispánica contemporánea (a special issue of Nuevo Texto Crítico, in press 2017). She has co-directed the IRSES Project “Transit: Transnationality at Large. The Transnational Dimension of Hispanic Culture in the XXth and XXIth Centuries”, funded by the European Commission and she is currently Principal Investigator of the ERC project “We are all Ayotzinapa: the role of digital media in the shaping of transnational memories on disappearance”.

Postdoctoral Researcher

Katia Olade

Katia Olalde holds a PhD in Art History from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). Her research focuses onthe connections that certain artistic practices and forms of cultural activism maintain with the actions of resistance, the grieving processes, and the shaping of dissident memories, which areconducted by a number of civil society groups in contexts of violence and impunity. In her PhD thesis she analysed the public, political and sensitive dimensions of some of the collaborative projects that aimed topublicly display the figures of homicides anddisappearances resulting from Mexico’s so-called ‘war on drugs’ as irreparable human losses rather than abstract numbers or “collateral damage”.

In the frame of this project, she studies the role of the portrait in the digital protests against enforced disappearance, and examines the meaning which notions such as ‘public space’, ‘community’ and ‘direct action’ acquire in the context of transnational collaboration schemes that emerge through the use of social media (working title“From the unburied bodies to the absence of the disappeared. The transition from words to images in #IlustradoresConAyotzinapa”).

Doctoral Researcher

Lene Guercke

Lene Guercke holds a MA in Human Rights from University College London (UCL) and a BA in International Law and International Politics and Peace and Conflict Studies from London Metropolitan University. She is now starting her PhD in Law at the KU Leuven. Her research interests include state responsibility for international crimes, strategies of denial, critical approaches to law, as well as extraterritoriality of human rights obligations.

Within the framework of the project, she is responsible for examining the legal dimension. Her research will focus on the relationship between law and memory (including memory practices) in cases of enforced disappearances in Mexico and elsewhere, as well as on the legal question of responsibility for human rights violations and international crimes in the Mexican context.

Postdoctoral Researcher

Sophie Dufays

Sophie Dufays holds a PhD in Philosophy and Letters from the University of Louvain (UCLouvain) and is specialist in Latin American cinema and culture.

She has worked as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the FNRS (Belgian National Fund for Scientific Research, 2013-2016), as a visiting lecturer at Ghent University, at the UCLouvain and the University of Liège, and as visiting scholar at Stanford University. She is the author of El niño en el cine argentino de la postdictadura (Tamesis 2014) and Infancia y melancolía en el cine argentino (Biblos 2016) and co-editor of two books about the uses of popular songs in Latin American and European Cinemas (published in Libraria, 2018 and Peter Lang, 2019).

She has also co-edited two special thematic sections in academic journals (about intimacy and politics in Spanish American literature and cinema, Letras Hispanas, 2016, and about “melodrama and tragedy” in cinema and theatre from Argentina and Mexico, Savoirs en Prisme, 2017).
In the frame of this project, she is interested in the impact of digital culture and resources in the conception and diffusion of audiovisual works produced about the disappeared in Mexico (especially related to the Ayotzinapa case), considering all formats. In particular, she analyses the treatment of faces, voices and landscapes in these works using the concepts of trauma, affect and waste, in order to approach the complex relationship between “memory” and “disappearance”.

Postdoctoral Researcher

Fabiola Navarro

Fabiola Navarro has a PhD in Science and Arts for Design from Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana- Xochimilco, and is a research fellow on digital media at KU Leuven. She had a Postdoctoral position at CriDIS/UCL -Centre de recherche interdisciplinaire «Démocratie, Institutions, Subjectivité», Université Catholique de Louvain- (2016) and previously held an academic post at the Department of Science of Communication and Design at Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana-Cuajimalpa (2009-2012). She has an MSc. in Media Arts and Imaging from the Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee University and a Master in Pedagogy from Universidad Panamericana. She holds a BA in Visual Arts from the Escuela Nacional de Artes Plásticas, at Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México and in Science of Communication from Universidad Tecnológica de México.

Her interest lies in the relationship of digital media and citizenship. To determine the role of digital memories in the movement of enforced disappearance in the Hispanic world, she studies the media attributions in a global era as a reinforcement of a civic culture of rights. Emerging from previous social and digital movements, she sees hipermedia practices as vital for social struggle.

Doctoral Researcher

Martín Zicari

Martín Zícari is a PhD researcher in Cultural Studies. Martín completed his BA in History at Universidad de Buenos Aires (UBA) in 2015, with a thesis entitled “Memoria y polémica: la palabra poética en la Nueva Crónica y Buen Gobierno de Felipe Guamán Poma de Ayala” on memory studies and postcolonial theory in the analysis of Peruvian literature. Also during his time at University of Buenos Aires, he was awarded a scholarship from the Ernst Reuter Gesellschaft at the Freie Universität Berlin to complete a research stay at FUBIS programme.
He is interested in the role of digital media in the shaping of social movements. In the framework of the project, his research focuses on the links between artistic actions and political participation in a digital context. Particularly, he is tracing the performance “El Siluetazo”, used in Postdictatorship Argentinean Human Rights movements and lately reenacted in the context of activism related to the disappearance of the students of Ayotzinapa.
Postdoctoral Researcher

Mariana Pérez

Mariana Eva Pérez is a graduate in Political Science from the University of Buenos Aires. She holds a PhD in Romance Literature from the University of Konstanz for her dissertation “Between Unfinished Mourning and Spectral Recognition. Representations of Disappearance in Argentine Drama (2001-2015)” (Award of the City of Konstanz for Scientific Promotion 2020).

She is author of Diario de una princesa montonera (Planeta, 2021) and edited El pasado inasequible (Eudeba, 2018), with Jordana Blejmar and Silvana Mandolessi.

She comes from an extensive background in the field of human rights and has participated in different projects that combine activism, science and arts.

Within the framework of this project, her postdoctoral research focuses on the search for the disappeared, seen as a complex process in which diverse state and civil society actors intervene from different perspectives, knowledge and practices. In particular, she is interested in the role of the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team in Argentina and Mexico and the aesthetic dimensions of the search for the disappeared in both countries.