Wednesday, August 22, 2007

SUNY New Paltz and Identity Politics

Who would have thought that the in-house style guide at the State University of New York, New Paltz, would be cutting-edge when it comes to Chicano/a onomastics; I quote:

Chicano, Hispanic, Latino, Mexican American These terms, which should be capitalized, have distinct meanings that depend, to a large extent, on the interpretations and preferences of individuals. According to Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, a Chicano is an American of Mexican descent; however, persons of Central and South American heritage may also consider themselves Chicanos. Chicana is the feminine form of Chicano. Plural forms are Chicanos and Chicanas. A Latino (feminine form: Latina) is a person of Latin American lineage; according to Webster's New Collegiate, Latin America consists of all the territories in the Americas south of the United States, but some Mexicans may prefer to call themselves Chicanos or Hispanics rather than Latinos. Plural forms are Latinos and Latinas. The term "Hispanic," according to Webster's New Collegiate, relates to the people, speech or culture of Spain, Portugal or Latin America. The plural form is Hispanics. A Mexican American is a native-born or naturalized American of Mexican heritage. Since Mexican American is a proper noun, do not hyphenate it, even when used as an adjective: A collection of Mexican American historical artifacts.

Not bad. Not bad at all. Any suggested edits? Leave a comment!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Before Tex[t]-Mex: Giving Credit Where Credit is Due

Save for a dig at him in an early version of this blog (it's near the bottom of the page, you will have to scroll and scroll), the Tex[t]-Mex Galleryblog has NOT come clean about its debt to John Leguizamo. Say what you will about the man, it was his New York one-man show MAMBO MOUTH, that blew away this wet-behind-the-ears assistant professor from the University of Connecticut--a riveting performance that opened my shuttered eyes to the velvety richness and intoxicating diversity of Latino and Latina stereotypes in the universe.

The 'and'?

Leguizamo gives great drag!.

Here's a 1991 Time Magazine piece on MAMBO MOUTH. A retrospective of scripts from his shows arrives in November from Harper Collins. Here's a couple of YouTube captures of Leguizamo in action:

Here's a decent interview with Leguizamo.

Lupe Vélez and Her Gringa Proxy

Not much of a new entry today, but during my trawl of the world wide waste of time, aka the world wide obsession, I stumbled on an eBay auction for a photo of Mexican phenom Lupe Vélez and her impersonator. Dutiful perusers of this space and of my book, Tex[t]-Mex already know of my Jean Baudrillard predilections, so I may be forgiven for forwarding this image with its implicit and explicit ironies to you.