Political Performances of Latinidad (Latinness): Ending Hispanic Heritage Month w/Rosie Perez & Stephen Colbert

Esteban Colberto Reporto Gigante (a faux Sábado Gigante by no-holds-barred Stephen Colbert)

October 15 ends the weird not-really-a-month, but-definitely-30-days-long "Hispanic Heritage Month" in the U.S. As the Latino/Hispanic (although that latter term is a weird one because it implies Spanish-speaking and the majority of "hispanics" in the U.S. don't actually speak Spanish) population continues to grow in size, careers are being made in the attempt to figure out which way this group will vote.

The first thing to say is that that very question is inaccurate. There are significant ideological and historical differences within the community that calls itself Latino and so it makes much more sense to be more precise before making prophecies.

Nevertheless, Latino identity has been much more politicized this election (the presence of Zoraida Fonalledas at the RNC and Julián Castro at the DNC are one highlight--the former was received with such a lack of "respect" that the delegates were chastised from the podium; the latter has been accused of "not really speaking Spanish"). I find it interesting that two of the prime examples that stood out from the last few weeks have been humorous, intentional hyper-exaggerations of "latinidad" (latinness) that play on media images of the loud, the opinionated, the gyrating. (I've written before on the importance of playfulness in Latin art.)

"Easier as a Latino?" Rosie Perez responds to Mitt Romney's joke about wishing he were Mexican

Posted in . Bookmark the permalink. RSS feed for this post.


Swedish Greys - a WordPress theme from Nordic Themepark. Converted by LiteThemes.com.