Chicano-Chicana Americana: Pop Culture Pluralism Starring Anthony Quinn, Katy Jurado, Robert Beltran

Chicano-Chicana Americana: Pop Culture Pluralism Starring Anthony Quinn, Katy Jurado, Robert Beltran, and Lupe Ontiveros

By Anthony Macías

This exciting new cultural history documents how Mexican Americans in twentieth-century film, television, and theater surpassed stereotypes, fought for equal opportunity, and subtly transformed the mainstream American imaginary. Through biographical sketches of underappreciated Mexican American actors, this work sheds new light on our national character and reveals the untold story of a multicentered, polycultural America.


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Book Information

Publisher: University of Arizona Press
Publish Date: 02/07/2023
Pages: 272
ISBN-13: 9780816547234
ISBN-10: 0816547238
Language: English

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September 08, 2023

Consider new books and new perspectives in our 2023 Hispanic Heritage Month booklist. READ FULL DESCRIPTION

Full Description

Chicano-Chicana Americana is a cultural history of Mexican Americans in film, television, and theater. Through biographical sketches of performers such as Anthony Quinn, Katy Jurado, Robert Beltran, and Lupe Ontiveros, this work asserts Mexican Americans' proper place in the national narratives of our collective imaginary. Conveying a multicentered, polycultural America, this book shows us intriguing performers in bit parts who steal the scene and redefine what it means to be American. Each biographical chapter analyzes an underappreciated actor, revealing their artistic contributions to U.S. common culture. Their long-shot careers tell a tale of players taking action with agency and fighting for screen time and equal opportunity despite disadvantages and differential treatment in Hollywood. These dynamic and complex individuals altered cinematic representations--and audience expectations--by surpassing stereotypes. The book explores American national character by showing how ethnic Mexicans attained social and cultural status through fair, open competition without a radical realignment of political or economic structures. Their creative achievements demanded dignity and earned respect. Anthony Macías argues that these performances demonstrated a pop culture pluralism that subtly changed mainstream America, transforming it from the mythological past of the Wild West to the speculative future of science fiction.

About the Author

Anthony Macías is a scholar of twentieth-century cultural history. An associate professor in the Ethnic Studies Department at the University of California, Riverside, he is the author of the book Mexican American Mojo: Popular Music, Dance, and Urban Culture in Los Angeles, 1935-1968.

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