Target intimacy: Notes on the convergence of the militarization and marketization of love in Colombia

Alexander L. Fattal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


This article considers the convergence of militarism and marketing in Colombia and argues that the axis of that confluence is the drive to appropriate intimacy, a fleeting index of love. I scrutinize this phenomenon in the context of the Colombian military’s individual demobilization program, which, prior to the peace accord of 2016, worked with the advertising firm that managed consumer brands such as Mazda and Red Bull. The double meaning of “campaigns” and “targets,” in the parlance of both generals and executives, was not haphazard but, rather, was doubly focusing on an effort to lure FARC guerrillas out of the insurgency and transform them into consumer citizens. I analyze how both consumer marketers and military intelligence officers went about their targeted persuasion, each creeping into increasingly personal realms. Situating my research in the broader context of the Global War on Terror and the rise of the global middle classes, I suggest that the fusion of militarism and marketing in Colombia is a harbinger of an affective mode of governance in the early twenty-first century that blurs military and civilian spheres as well as the temporal distinction between times of peace from times of war.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S49-S61
JournalCurrent anthropology
Issue numberS19
StatePublished - Feb 1 2019


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Archaeology
  • Anthropology
  • Archaeology

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