This analysis of visual culture—from popular press and film to the utilization of visual technologies in forensics and criminal photography—projects images of modern Mexico that criminalized marginalized youths and upheld notions of proper behavior for adolescents while also bringing social commentaries to bear upon the realities of inequality in Mexican society near the mid-century. An intertextual reading of images such as fingerprinting, film, mugshots, and photojournalism expands our view of the processes and technologies that served to shape ideas about normal and deviant youths as the future citizens of the Mexican nation post-revolution. This analysis of visual sources hopes to contribute to a larger project that examines how notions about respectability and morality were tethered to ideas about class in Mexico City, and how youths were placed at the center of those programs of social control.
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