Next of Kin

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-07-01
  • Publisher: Duke Univ Pr
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As both an idea and an institution, the family has been at the heart of Chicano/a cultural politics since the Mexican American civil rights movement emerged in the late 1960s. InNext of Kin, Richard T. Rodriacute;guez explores the competing notions ofla familiafound in movement-inspired literature, film, video, music, painting, and other forms of cultural expression created by Chicano men. Drawing on cultural studies and feminist and queer theory, he examines representations of the family that reflect and support a patriarchal, hetero-normative nationalism as well as those that reconfigure kinship to encompass alternative forms of belonging. Describing howla familiacame to be adopted as an organizing strategy for communitarian politics, Rodriacute;guez looks at foundational texts including Rodolfo Gonzales's well-known poem "I Am Joaquiacute;n," the Chicano Liberation Youth Conference's manifestoEl Plan Espiritual de Aztlaacute;n, and Joseacute; Armas'sLa Familia de La Raza. Rodriacute;guez analyzes representations of the family in the filmsI Am Joaquiacute;n, Yo Soy Chicano, andChicana; the Los Angeles public affairs television seriesiexcl;Ahora!; the experimental videos of the artist-activist Harry Gamboa Jr.; and the work of hip-hop artists such as Kid Frost and Chicano Brotherhood. He reflects on homophobia in Chicano nationalist thought, and examines how Chicano gay men have responded to it in works including Al Lujan's videoS & M in the Hood, the paintings of Eugene Rodriacute;guez, and a poem by the late activist Rodrigo Reyes.Next of Kinis both a wide-ranging assessment ofla familia's symbolic power and a hopeful call for a more inclusive cultural politics.

Author Biography

Richard T. Rodrguez is Associate Professor of English and Latina/Latino Studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

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