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Amor en Aztlán: Music, Movement, Performance, and Power in the Conjunto Dancehalls of the Texas—Mexico Borderlands


This dissertation examines the Texas Mexican musical genre known as conjunto and its concomitant social world. In this work I situate conjunto within a broader context of Mexican American cultural production, Texas Mexican popular music, and the shared histories of the U.S.-Mexico borderlands. As a social history, the dissertation traces the development of the genre and its practitioners across the twentieth century to the present. I examine interactions of power; expressions of identity; and constructions of race, class, and gender through movement (dance), performance (instrumentation and playing), and place (the dancehall or nite club) within and around San Antonio and South Texas. I argue that conjunto is an embodiment of Xicanx thought and knowledge, an everyday act of resistance and reaffirmation.

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