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The Role of Folklorico and Danzantes Unidos in the Chican@ Movement


During the 1960’s there was an explosion of

hundreds of folklorico groups throughout the

southwest. Folklorico is a recurring aspect

of Chicana/o community events and has come

to be recognized as a principal symbol of

Mexican heritage and pride but has been

largely ignored as a legitimate area of art.

Where folklorico was used as a nationalizing

tool by the Mexican government in trying to

blend identities of different ethnic groups

together in mestizaje, folklorico in the United

States took on a different connotation in

resistance and pride. The purpose of this study

is to explore the role of folklorico, traditional

Mexican dance and its lack of attention in

Chican@ History, by examining the role of one

influential state wide organization founded in

the late 1970’s, Danzantes Unidos.

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