Blacktino Queer Performance
E. Patrick Johnson and Ramón H. Rivera-Servera, editors Duke University Press, 2016 Library of Congress PN1590.G39B533 2016
Staging an important new conversation between performers and critics, Blacktino Queer Performance approaches the interrelations of blackness and Latinidad through a stimulating mix of theory and art. The collection contains nine performance scripts by established and emerging black and Latina/o queer playwrights and performance artists, each accompanied by an interview and critical essay conducted or written by leading scholars of black, Latina/o, and queer expressive practices. As the volume's framing device, "blacktino" grounds the specificities of black and brown social and political relations while allowing the contributors to maintain the goals of queer-of-color critique. Whether interrogating constructions of Latino masculinity, theorizing the black queer male experience, or examining black lesbian relationships, the contributors present blacktino queer performance as an artistic, critical, political, and collaborative practice. These scripts, interviews, and essays not only accentuate the value of blacktino as a reading device; they radiate the possibilities for thinking through the concepts of blacktino, queer, and performance across several disciplines. Blacktino Queer Performance reveals the inevitable flirtations, frictions, and seductions that mark the contours of any ethnoracial love affair.
Contributors. Jossiana Arroyo, Marlon M. Bailey, Pamela Booker, Sharon Bridgforth, Jennifer Devere Brody, Cedric Brown, Bernadette Marie Calafell, Javier Cardona, E. Patrick Johnson, Omi Osun Joni L. Jones, John Keene, Lawrence La Fountain-Stokes, D. Soyini Madison, Jeffrey Q. McCune Jr., Andreea Micu, Charles I. Nero, Tavia Nyong'o, Paul Outlaw, Coya Paz, Charles Rice-González, Sandra L. Richards, Matt Richardson, Ramón H. Rivera-Servera, Celiany Rivera-Velázquez, Tamara Roberts, Lisa B. Thompson, Beliza Torres Narváez, Patricia Ybarra, Vershawn Ashanti Young
Drawn from the first ten years of the Goodman Theatre’s renowned biennial festival of Latino plays, the works in this collection expand the definition of Latino theater, resisting the confines of a particular language, locale, or assumed audience. Instead of focusing on similarities that outline the boundaries of Latino identity, these plays look outward, representing the multiplicity of actual Latino experience. The plays were written and performed sometimes in English and sometimes in Spanish; their stories are set in heterogeneous milieus; they’re directed at both Latino and non-Latino audiences; and they incorporate cultural or theatrical elements from vastly different traditions. As a group, these plays indicate the extraordinary range of the festival’s offerings and show how it has contributed to a more complex notion of what Latino theater is and can be.
Hispanic theatre flourished in the United States from the mid-nineteenth century until the beginning of the Second World War—a fact that few theatre historians know. A History of Hispanic Theatre in the United States: Origins to 1940 is the very first study of this rich tradition, filled with details about plays, authors, artists, companies, houses, directors, and theatrical circuits. Sixteen years of research in public and private archives in the United States, Mexico, Spain, and Puerto Rico inform this study. In addition, Kanellos located former performers and playwrights, forgotten scripts, and old photographs to bring the life and vitality of live theatre to his text. He organizes the book around the cities where Hispanic theatre was particularly active, including Los Angeles, San Antonio, New York, and Tampa, as well as cities on the touring circuit, such as Laredo, El Paso, Tucson, and San Francisco. Kanellos charts the major achievements of Hispanic theatre in each city—playwriting in Los Angeles, vaudeville and tent theatre in San Antonio, Cuban/Spanish theatre in Tampa, and pan-Hispanism in New York—as well as the individual careers of several actors, writers, and directors. And he uncovers many gaps in the record—reminders that despite its popularity, Hispanic theatre was often undervalued and unrecorded. For all students of American theatre and Hispanic culture, this original study should be required reading.
Latinx Theater in the Times of Neoliberalism traces how Latinx theater in the United States has engaged with the policies, procedures, and outcomes of neoliberal economics in the Americas from the 1970s to the present.
Patricia A. Ybarra examines IMF interventions, NAFTA, shifts in immigration policy, the escalation of border industrialization initiatives, and austerity programs. She demonstrates how these policies have created the conditions for many of the most tumultuous events in the Americas in the last forty years, including dictatorships in the Southern Cone; the 1994 Cuban Rafter Crisis; femicides in Juárez, Mexico; the Zapatista uprising in Chiapas, Mexico; and the rise of narcotrafficking as a violent and vigorous global business throughout the Americas.
Latinx artists have responded to these crises by writing and developing innovative theatrical modes of representation about neoliberalism. Ybarra analyzes the work of playwrights María Irene Fornés, Cherríe Moraga, Michael John Garcés, Caridad Svich, Quiara Alegría Hudes, Victor Cazares, Jorge Ignacio Cortiñas, Tanya Saracho, and Octavio Solis. In addressing histories of oppression in their home countries, these playwrights have newly imagined affective political and economic ties in the Americas. They also have rethought the hallmark movements of Latin politics in the United States—cultural nationalism, third world solidarity, multiculturalism—and their many discontents.
In Negotiating Performance, major scholars and practitioners of the theatrical arts consider the diversity of Latin American and U. S. Latino performance: indigenous theater, performance art, living installations, carnival, public demonstrations, and gender acts such as transvestism. By redefining performance to include such events as Mayan and AIDS theater, the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, and Argentinean drag culture, this energetic volume discusses the dynamics of Latino/a identity politics and the sometimes discordant intersection of gender, sexuality, and nationalisms. The Latin/o America examined here stretches from Patagonia to New York City, bridging the political and geographical divides between U.S. Latinos and Latin Americans. Moving from Nuyorican casitas in the South Bronx, to subversive street performances in Buenos Aires, to border art from San Diego/Tijuana, this volume negotiates the borders that bring Americans together and keep them apart, while at the same time debating the use of the contested term "Latino/a." In the emerging dialogue, contributors reenvision an inclusive "América," a Latin/o America that does not pit nationality against ethnicity—in other words, a shared space, and a home to all Latin/o Americans. Negotiating Performance opens up the field of Latin/o American theater and performance criticism by looking at performance work by Mayans, women, gays, lesbians, and other marginalized groups. In so doing, this volume will interest a wide audience of students and scholars in feminist and gender studies, theater and performance studies, and Latin American and Latino cultural studies.
Contributors. Judith Bettelheim, Sue-Ellen Case, Juan Flores, Jean Franco, Donald H. Frischmann, Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Jorge Huerta, Tiffany Ana López, Jacqueline Lazú, María Teresa Marrero, Cherríe Moraga, Kirsten F. Nigro, Patrick O’Connor, Jorge Salessi, Alberto Sandoval, Cynthia Steele, Diana Taylor, Juan Villegas, Marguerite Waller
Performing Queer Latinidad highlights the critical role that performance played in the development of Latina/o queer public culture in the United States during the 1990s and early 2000s, a period when the size and influence of the Latina/o population was increasing alongside a growing scrutiny of the public spaces where latinidad could circulate. Performances---from concert dance and street protest to the choreographic strategies deployed by dancers at nightclubs---served as critical meeting points and practices through which LGBT and other nonnormative sex practitioners of Latin American descent (individuals with greatly differing cultures, histories of migration or annexation to the United States, and contemporary living conditions) encountered each other and forged social, cultural, and political bonds. At a time when latinidad ascended to the national public sphere in mainstream commercial and political venues and Latina/o public space was increasingly threatened by the redevelopment of urban centers and a revived anti-immigrant campaign, queer Latinas/os in places such as the Bronx, San Antonio, Austin, Phoenix, and Rochester, NY, returned to performance to claim spaces and ways of being that allowed their queerness and latinidad to coexist. These social events of performance and their attendant aesthetic communication strategies served as critical sites and tactics for creating and sustaining queer latinidad.
Latina theater and solo performance emerged in the 1990s as vibrant, energetic new genres found on stages from New York to Los Angeles. Many women now work in all aspects of Latina theater—often as playwrights or solo performers—with practitioners ranging from teenagers to grandmothers. Alberto Sandoval-Sánchez and Nancy Saporta Sternbach have previously published a groundbreaking anthology of Latina theater, Puro Teatro. They now offer a critical analysis of theatrical works, presenting a theoretical perspective from which to examine, understand, and contextualize Latina theater as a genre in its own right. This is the first in-depth study of the entire corpus of Latina theater, based on close readings of works both published and in manuscript. It considers a large body of productions and performances, including works by such internationally known authors as Dolores Prida, Cherríe Moraga, and Janis Astor del Valle. Applying feminist and postcolonial theory as well as theories of transculturation, Sandoval-Sánchez and Sternbach show how, despite cultural differences among Latinas, their works share a common poetics by building upon the politics of representation, identity, and location. In addition to covering theater, this study also shows that solo performance has its own history, properties, structure, and poetics. It examines performances of Carmelita Tropicana, Monica Palacios, and Marga Gomez—artists whose hybrid identities as Latina lesbians constitute living examples of transculturation in the making—to show how solo performance has roots in and digresses from more traditional modes of theater. With their Latina heritage as a unifying link, these women reflect common traits, patterns, dramatic structures, and properties that overcome regional differences. Stages of Life reads these eclectic cultural productions as a unified body of work that contributes to the formation of Latina identity in America today.