Dr. David Knutson, Professor & Chair in the Department of Modern Languages, was a speaker at the 2011 Medellín Negro literary conference, held September 14-16 in Medellín, Colombia. Knutson appeared on a panel focused on the path of crime fiction from North to South and presented an article on Iowa police procedural writer Donald Harstad. Titled "Un sherrif glocal: novela negra en el corazón de los Estados Unidos" (A Glocal Sherrif: Crime Fiction in the Heartland), the presentation considered local influences on processes of globalization and the global internconnections that have pushed crime out of traditional urban jungles into the bucolic, pastoral country.
The Medellín Negro conference was part of the "Fiesta del Libro y de la Cultura," celebrating arts and letters in a city that has been notorious for crime and violence. The citizens of Medellín now enjoy a high standard of living, confident that their dark history is in the past.