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Somos.—Politics, Memory, and the Work of Fiction

General Programming

July 22, 2021

A ProPublica essay by Pulitzer Prize-winner Ginger Thompson (Columbia Journalism School) about a little-known 2011 massacre in the Mexican border town of Allende—and the role the U.S. government played in triggering it—serves as the basis for Somos. created by James Schamus (Columbia School of the Arts). Co-written by Schamus with television writer Mónika Revilla and novelist Fernanda Melchor (Hurricane Season), Somos. poses thorny questions about fictionalizing psychologically devastating events for mass consumption. Melchor joins Thompson and Schamus, along with scholars Karl Jacoby and Renzo Aroni, in discussing the risks and challenges faced in turning such stories into mainstream entertainment.