Looking for Mexico

Author: John Mraz
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822392200
Release Date: 2010-07-01
Genre: History

In Looking for Mexico, a leading historian of visual culture, John Mraz, provides a panoramic view of Mexico’s modern visual culture from the U.S. invasion of 1847 to the present. Along the way, he illuminates the powerful role of photographs, films, illustrated magazines, and image-filled history books in the construction of national identity, showing how Mexicans have both made themselves and been made with the webs of significance spun by modern media. Central to Mraz’s book is photography, which was distributed widely throughout Mexico in the form of cartes-de-visite, postcards, and illustrated magazines. Mraz analyzes the work of a broad range of photographers, including Guillermo Kahlo, Winfield Scott, Hugo Brehme, Agustín Víctor Casasola, Tina Modotti, Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Héctor García, Pedro Meyer, and the New Photojournalists. He also examines representations of Mexico’s past in the country’s influential picture histories: popular, large-format, multivolume series replete with thousands of photographs and an assortment of texts. Turning to film, Mraz compares portrayals of the Mexican Revolution by Fernando de Fuentes to the later movies of Emilio Fernández and Gabriel Figueroa. He considers major stars of Golden Age cinema as gender archetypes for mexicanidad, juxtaposing the charros (hacienda cowboys) embodied by Pedro Infante, Pedro Armendáriz, and Jorge Negrete with the effacing women: the mother, Indian, and shrew as played by Sara García, Dolores del Río, and María Félix. Mraz also analyzes the leading comedians of the Mexican screen, representations of the 1968 student revolt, and depictions of Frida Kahlo in films made by Paul Leduc and Julie Taymor. Filled with more than fifty illustrations, Looking for Mexico is an exuberant plunge into Mexico’s national identity, its visual culture, and the connections between the two.

Imagining la Chica Moderna

Author: Joanne Hershfield
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 0822342383
Release Date: 2008-06-27
Genre: History

Traces the role of popular culture--particularly visual culture--in shaping the modern Mexican woman.

Performing Mexico Lila Downs Mexikanische Geschichte Anthropologie und soziopolitische Gegenwart im Spiegel der Musik

Author: Eve Ebeling
Publisher: Diplomica Verlag
ISBN: 9783842888302
Release Date: 2013-11
Genre: History

Lila Downs, charismatische Ausnahmekünstlerin mit Anspruch - anhand des Lebens, der persönlichen Motivation und der Liedtexte dieser US-amerikanisch-mexikanischen Sängerin wird das inhaltliche Potential ihrer Musik den Erwartungen ihres Publikums gegenübergestellt. Beispielhaft wird, mithilfe unterschiedlicher Forschungsdisziplinen, veranschaulicht, was Musik heute noch zu bewegen vermag; als Trägerin von Erinnerungen, Überzeugungen und Hoffnungen.

Mexico Today

Author: Alex Saragoza
Publisher: ABC-CLIO
ISBN: 9780313349485
Release Date: 2012-01
Genre: Reference

Presents alphabetically ordered encyclopedic entries on the most important aspects of modern Mexico, covering such topics as folklore, pop culture, politics and government, the economy, the environment, and social issues.

The Routledge Companion to Photography and Visual Culture

Author: Moritz Neumüller
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 9781317212362
Release Date: 2018-04-25
Genre: Photography

The Routledge Companion to Photography and Visual Culture is a seminal reference source for the ever-changing field of photography. Comprising an impressive range of essays and interviews by experts and scholars from across the globe, this book examines the medium’s history, its central issues and emerging trends, and its much-discussed future. The collected essays and interviews explore the current debates surrounding the photograph as object, art, document, propaganda, truth, selling tool, and universal language; the perception of photography archives as burdens, rather than treasures; the continual technological development reshaping the field; photography as a tool of representation and control, and more. One of the most comprehensive volumes of its kind, this companion is essential reading for photographers and historians alike.

A Camera in the Garden of Eden

Author: Kevin Coleman
Publisher: University of Texas Press
ISBN: 9781477308561
Release Date: 2016-02-23
Genre: History

In the early twentieth century, the Boston-based United Fruit Company controlled the production, distribution, and marketing of bananas, the most widely consumed fresh fruit in North America. So great was the company's power that it challenged the sovereignty of the Latin American and Caribbean countries in which it operated, giving rise to the notion of company-dominated "banana republics." In A Camera in the Garden of Eden, Kevin Coleman argues that the "banana republic" was an imperial constellation of images and practices that was checked and contested by ordinary Central Americans. Drawing on a trove of images from four enormous visual archives and a wealth of internal company memos, literary works, immigration records, and declassified US government telegrams, Coleman explores how banana plantation workers, women, and peasants used photography to forge new ways of being while also visually asserting their rights as citizens. He tells a dramatic story of the founding of the Honduran town of El Progreso, where the United Fruit Company had one of its main divisional offices, the rise of the company now known as Chiquita, and a sixty-nine day strike in which banana workers declared their independence from neocolonial domination. In telling this story, Coleman develops a new set of conceptual tools and methods for using images to open up fresh understandings of the past, offering a model that is applicable far beyond this pathfinding study.

Agustin Lara

Author: Andrew Grant Wood
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199976744
Release Date: 2014-06-13
Genre: Music

Few Mexican musicians in the twentieth century achieved as much notoriety or had such an international impact as the popular singer and songwriter Agust?n Lara (1897-1970). Widely known as "el flaco de oro" ("the Golden Skinny"), this remarkably thin fellow was prolific across the genres of bolero, ballad, and folk. His most beloved "Granada", a song so enduring that it has been covered by the likes of Mario Lanza, Frank Sinatra, and Placido Domingo, is today a standard in the vocal repertory. However, there exists very little biographical literature on Lara in English. In Agust?n Lara: A Cultural Biography, author Andrew Wood's informed and informative placement of Lara's work in a broader cultural context presents a rich and comprehensive reading of the life of this significant musical figure. Lara's career as a media celebrity as well as musician provides an excellent window on Mexican society in the mid-twentieth century and on popular culture in Latin America. Wood also delves into Lara's music itself, bringing to light how the composer's work unites a number of important currents in Latin music of his day, particularly the bolero. With close musicological focus and in-depth cultural analysis riding alongside the biographical narrative, Agustin Lara: A Cultural Biography is a welcome read to aficionados and performers of Latin American musics, as well as a valuable addition to the study of modern Mexican music and Latin American popular culture as a whole.

Photographing the Mexican Revolution

Author: John Mraz
Publisher: University of Texas Press
ISBN: 9780292742833
Release Date: 2012-04-18
Genre: Photography

The Mexican Revolution of 1910–1920 is among the world’s most visually documented revolutions. Coinciding with the birth of filmmaking and the increased mobility offered by the reflex camera, it received extraordinary coverage by photographers and cineastes—commercial and amateur, national and international. Many images of the Revolution remain iconic to this day—Francisco Villa galloping toward the camera; Villa lolling in the presidential chair next to Emiliano Zapata; and Zapata standing stolidly in charro raiment with a carbine in one hand and the other hand on a sword, to mention only a few. But the identities of those who created the thousands of extant images of the Mexican Revolution, and what their purposes were, remain a huge puzzle because photographers constantly plagiarized each other’s images. In this pathfinding book, acclaimed photography historian John Mraz carries out a monumental analysis of photographs produced during the Mexican Revolution, focusing primarily on those made by Mexicans, in order to discover who took the images and why, to what ends, with what intentions, and for whom. He explores how photographers expressed their commitments visually, what aesthetic strategies they employed, and which identifications and identities they forged. Mraz demonstrates that, contrary to the myth that Agustín Víctor Casasola was “the photographer of the Revolution,” there were many who covered the long civil war, including women. He shows that specific photographers can even be linked to the contending forces and reveals a pattern of commitment that has been little commented upon in previous studies (and completely unexplored in the photography of other revolutions).

Photo Archives and the Idea of Nation

Author: Costanza Caraffa
Publisher: Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG
ISBN: 9783110390032
Release Date: 2015-01-01
Genre: Art

The question of the (photographic) construction and representation of national identity is not limited to the ‘long 19th century’, but is a current issue in the post-colonial, post-global, digital world. The essays by international contributors aim at studying the relationship between photographic archives and the idea of nation, yet without focusing on single symbolic icons and instead considering the wider archival and sedimental dimension.

Ghosts of the Revolution in Mexican Literature and Visual Culture

Author: Erica Segre
Publisher: Peter Lang Pub Incorporated
ISBN: UCSD:31822040769390
Release Date: 2013
Genre: Art

The official centenary commemorating the Mexican Revolution of 1910 led to this specially commissioned volume, which explores notions such as 'revisitation', haunting and memorialization through a detailed examination of Mexican art, photography, film, narrative fiction, periodicals, travel-testimonies and poetry.

Cosmopolitanism in Mexican Visual Culture

Author: María Fernández
Publisher: University of Texas Press
ISBN: 9780292745353
Release Date: 2014-01-06
Genre: Art

Since the colonial era, Mexican art has emerged from an ongoing process of negotiation between the local and the global, which frequently involves invention, synthesis, and transformation of diverse discursive and artistic traditions. In this pathfinding book, María Fernández uses the concept of cosmopolitanism to explore this important aspect of Mexican art, in which visual culture and power relations unite the local and the global, the national and the international, the universal and the particular. She argues that in Mexico, as in other colonized regions, colonization constructed power dynamics and forms of violence that persisted in the independent nation-state. Accordingly, Fernández presents not only the visual qualities of objects, but also the discourses, ideas, desires, and practices that are fundamental to the very existence of visual objects. Fernández organizes episodes in the history of Mexican art and architecture, ranging from the seventeenth century to the end of the twentieth century, around the consistent but unacknowledged historical theme of cosmopolitanism, allowing readers to discern relationships among various historical periods and works that are new and yet simultaneously dependent on their predecessors. She uses case studies of art and architecture produced in response to government commissions to demonstrate that established visual forms and meanings in Mexican art reflect and inform desires, expectations, memories, and ways of being in the world—in short, that visual culture and cosmopolitanism are fundamental to processes of subjectification and identity.

Uprooted

Author: John Mraz
Publisher:
ISBN: 155885178X
Release Date: 1996-01-01
Genre: Photography

These two scholars have plumbed the rich Mayo Brothers archive in Mexico's Secretariate of Foreign Relations to select the photos represented here on one of the most controversial cross-cultural subjects of their time: the Bracero Program. This landmark coffee table book offers 83 historical photos and an introduction documenting their importance.

Crafting Mexico

Author: Rick A. López
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822391739
Release Date: 2010-08-19
Genre: History

After Mexico’s revolution of 1910–1920, intellectuals sought to forge a unified cultural nation out of the country’s diverse populace. Their efforts resulted in an “ethnicized” interpretation of Mexicanness that intentionally incorporated elements of folk and indigenous culture. In this rich history, Rick A. López explains how thinkers and artists, including the anthropologist Manuel Gamio, the composer Carlos Chávez, the educator Moisés Sáenz, the painter Diego Rivera, and many less-known figures, formulated and promoted a notion of nationhood in which previously denigrated vernacular arts—dance, music, and handicrafts such as textiles, basketry, ceramics, wooden toys, and ritual masks—came to be seen as symbolic of Mexico’s modernity and national distinctiveness. López examines how the nationalist project intersected with transnational intellectual and artistic currents, as well as how it was adapted in rural communities. He provides an in-depth account of artisanal practices in the village of Olinalá, located in the mountainous southern state of Guerrero. Since the 1920s, Olinalá has been renowned for its lacquered boxes and gourds, which have been considered to be among the “most Mexican” of the nation’s arts. Crafting Mexico illuminates the role of cultural politics and visual production in Mexico’s transformation from a regionally and culturally fragmented country into a modern nation-state with an inclusive and compelling national identity.

Searching for Madre Matiana

Author: Edward Wright-Rios
Publisher: UNM Press
ISBN: 9780826346605
Release Date: 2014-12-01
Genre: History

In the mid-nineteenth century prophetic visions attributed to a woman named Madre Matiana roiled Mexican society. Pamphlets of the time proclaimed that decades earlier a humble laywoman foresaw the nation’s calamitous destiny—foreign invasion, widespread misery, and chronic civil strife. The revelations, however, pinpointed the cause of Mexico’s struggles: God was punishing the nation for embracing blasphemous secularism. Responses ranged from pious alarm to incredulous scorn. Although most likely a fiction cooked up amid the era’s culture wars, Madre Matiana’s persona nevertheless endured. In fact, her predictions remained influential well into the twentieth century as society debated the nature of popular culture, the crux of modern nationhood, and the role of women, especially religious women. Here Edward Wright-Rios examines this much-maligned—and sometimes celebrated—character and her position in the development of a nation.

A Companion to Mexican History and Culture

Author: William H. Beezley
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 9781444340587
Release Date: 2011-03-16
Genre: History

A Companion to Mexican History and Culture features 40 essays contributed by international scholars that incorporate ethnic, gender, environmental, and cultural studies to reveal a richer portrait of the Mexican experience, from the earliest peoples to the present. Features the latest scholarship on Mexican history and culture by an array of international scholars Essays are separated into sections on the four major chronological eras Discusses recent historical interpretations with critical historiographical sources, and is enriched by cultural analysis, ethnic and gender studies, and visual evidence The first volume to incorporate a discussion of popular music in political analysis This book is the receipient of the 2013 Michael C. Meyer Special Recognition Award from the Rocky Mountain Conference on Latin American Studies.