- Purchase/rental options available:
Sabina Berman's El narco negocia con Dios (2012) provides a poignant response to the drug violence that plagued the country by the end of Felipe Calderón's sexenio. Staged in June 2016, it came out in the heat of a presidential election that pitted the eventual winner, Enrique Peña Nieto, against Andrés Manuel López Obrador and Josefina Vázquez Mota. This political referent is palpable throughout the play as the different characters interact with each other. The present article discusses Berman's use of cyborg imageries to imagine an allegorical path forward for a beleaguered nation exhausted with a narco war. Indeed, Berman uses these imageries to allegorically theorize the relationship that exists between the different factions of twenty-first-century Mexican society. As she imbues these allegorical ties with cyborg elements, Berman produces metatheatrical elements to the performance that allow her to call her audience to political action. While the play is hardly optimistic about the prospects facing the country, it does tentatively argue for an alliance between intellectual and religious currents of society against a neoliberal order that has promoted the illicit drug war for far too long. In this way, the playwright anticipates the coalition that would later sweep López Obrador to power in 2018, though it remains skeptical of such an alliance's ability to bring about systemic changes to Mexican society.