Latino/a Popular Culture

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"The stunning, eloquent, and insightful essays broaden both our knowledge of Latino/a cultural production and challenge the traditional paradigms of cultural and ethnic studies doing so through accessible, historically informed approaches."

—Mary Pat Brady, Cornell University

Latinos have become the largest ethnic minority group in the United States. While the presence of Latinos and Latinas in mainstream news and in popular culture in the United States buttresses the much-heralded Latin Explosion, the images themselves are often contradictory.

In Latino/a Popular Culture, Habell-Pallán and Romero have brought together scholars from the humanities and social sciences to analyze representations of Latinidad in a diversity of genres - media, culture, music, film, theatre, art, and sports - that are emerging across the nation in relation to Chicanas, Chicanos, mestizos, Puerto Ricans, Caribbeans, Central Americans and South Americans, and Latinos in Canada.

Contributors include Adrian Burgos, Jr., Luz Calvo, Arlene Dávila, Melissa A. Fitch, Michelle Habell-Pallán, Tanya Katerí; Hernández, Josh Kun, Frances Negron-Muntaner, William A. Nericcio, Raquel Z. Rivera, Ana Patricia Rodríguez, Gregory Rodriguez, Mary Romero, Alberto Sandoval-Sánchez, Christopher A. Shinn, Deborah R. Vargas, and Juan Velasco.

Author Biography: Michelle Habell-Pallán is Assistant Professor in American Ethnic Studies at the University of Washington. Mary Romero is Professor of Justice Studies at Arizona University and a Carnegie Scholar with the Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. Her booksinclude Challenging Fronteras: Structuring Latina and Latino Lives in the U.S..

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The book provides an insight into the current struggles that Latinos who live in the norhern hemisphere face."


Library Journal
A collection of 16 thought-provoking essays centered on media, music, theater, art, and sports, this multidisciplinary and multiethnic project stresses "the need to amplify the investigation of Latino popular culture within a larger context of the Americas." Challenging the perception of Latinization in culture, the contributors, mostly scholars from the humanities and social sciences (Arlene D villa, Luz Calvo, and Ana Patricia Rodriguez, to name a few), almost without exception follow the theme of identity among Latin groups typified in the opening essay on Latino portrayals on Spanish-language television. MTV International is the topic of a disturbing piece on music videos and social activism led by a border band. The phenomenon of Mexican American boxer Oscar de la Hoya is the subject of an essay on the Latino rejection of a cultural icon thought to be too Anglicized for many in the Los Angeles barrios. More focused on the influences of North American Latino culture than the recent Latin American Popular Culture: An Introduction, this collection deserves a space on shelves in all academic libraries. Boyd Childress, Auburn Univ. Lib., NY Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814736241
  • Publisher: New York University Press
  • Publication date: 5/1/2002
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 0.81 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 9.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Michelle Habell-Pallán is an Associate Professor in the Women Studies Department at the University of Washington, Seattle. She is the co-editor with Mary Romero of Latino/a Popular Culture (NYU Press, 2002).

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Table of Contents

1 Talking Back: Spanish Media and U.S. Latinidad

2 Barbie’s Hair: Selling Out Puerto Rican Identity in the Global Market

3 The Buena Vista Social Club: The Racial Politics of Nostalgia

4 “Lemme Stay, I Want to Watch”: Ambivalence in Borderlands Cinema

5 Encrucijadas: Rubén Blades at the Transnational Crossroads

6 “The Sun Never Sets on MTV”: Tijuana NO! and the Border of Music Video

7 Bidi Bidi Bom Bom: Selena and Tejano Music in the Making of Tejas

8 Hip Hop and New York Puerto Ricans

9 Paul Simon’s The Capeman: The Staging of Puerto Rican National Identity as Spectacle and Commodity on Broadway

10 Gender Bending in Latino Theater

11 “Don’t Call Us Hispanic”: Popular Latino Theater in Vancouver

12 A Decidedly “Mexican” and “American” Semi[er]otic Transference

13 Performing Multiple Identities: Guillermo Gómez-Peña and His “Dangerous Border Crossings”

14 Learning America’s Other Game: Baseball, Race, and the Study of Latinos

15 Fútbol Nation: U.S. Latinos and the Goal of a Homeland

16 Boxing and Masculinity: The History and (Her)story of Oscar de la Hoya

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