Shakespeare: Made in México
- Author(s): Garcia, Leticia Concepcion
- Advisor(s): Reynolds, Bryan R
- et al.
Shakespeare: Made in México examines the implications of Shakespeare in México through a study of cross-cultural exchange between Mexican culture and Shakespeare as a global industry. The conscious mobilization of cultural differences in the service of Shakespeare’s worldwide currency deserves a more inclusive approach; it is time to recognize the potential of other locales in the production of knowledge. The dissertation identifies three main categories of analysis: 1) the development of arts initiatives in México is examined, focusing on the government’s incorporation of culture into the national project; 2) the impact of Shakespeare in Mexican film and television is examined to show how Shakespeare has been shaped by Mexican popular culture; 3) the work of avant-garde and contemporary theatre artists who have created and devised Mexican productions of Shakespeare that have surfaced in moments of marked political struggle. This evocation of celebration, reception, and implied universalism builds on a long-term, sustained commitment to Shakespeare as a model of transcendental human essence—one this study identifies as functioning as both a tool of national preservation and one of cultural resistance to the rapidly changing colonial regimes of the past two centuries in México.
These relationships are addressed in two ways: first, by reading ideas of Mexican national culture produced in politically constrained fields; second, by remapping a vast—but familiar—terrain of national culture in México. Shakespeare: Made in México posits three points that set the precedent for a study of Shakespeare in México. First, by exploring the inclusion of Shakespeare into Mexican theatrical practices, this study considers how localized performances of Shakespeare may be used to speak back to empire and to critique the culture of imperialism on its own terms. Second, this study identifies unique instances in which México territorializes Shakespeare. Finally, the dissertation shows how Shakespeare is used to interpret culture, and more importantly to excavate questions of diversity in existing canonical models currently encountered in classrooms. This project challenges the supposed authority embedded in notions of Eurocentric narrative and methodology—ones that privilege their archives as the authoritative sources for understanding a specific history and approach to Shakespeare studies.