Huapangueros Reclaiming Son Huasteco in Trans-local Festivals: Youth, Women and Nahua Musicians
Muñoz, Kim Anne Carter
MetadataShow full item record
This dissertation analyzes a complex and multifaceted Huastecan identity, which is created and performed at <italic>encuentros huapangueros</italic> and how it is related to pluri-multicultural politics and policies of folklore in Mexico, through <italic>El Programa de Desarrollo Cultural de la Huasteca</italic> (hereafter, the PDCH). <italic>Encuentros</italic>, meetings or congresses, <italic>huapangueros</italic>, of practitioners of <italic>huapango</italic>, are open participatory concert-dance events, where elder tradition bearers, youth, cultural promoters, and community members gather to dance, sing, perform poetry and play Huastecan music at different festivals that are part of this trans-local cultural scene, in particular: <italic>El Festival de la Huasteca</italic>, and <italic>La Fiesta Anual de Huapango Amatlán</italic>. The following chapters focus on three groups of important representatives in this process at the <italic>encuentros</italic>: <italic>maestros</italic> (who are also workshop leaders) and their students, <italic>mestiza trovadoras</italic> (women poetess-singers) from Pánuco, Veracruz and <italic>nahua</italic> musicians from Hidalgo. By comparing their staged performances at the festival with informal performances--both in their home communities and in informal settings in and around the festival--I analyze how the agency of musicians combines with cultural policy to transmit local and regional practices associated with <italic>son huasteco</italic> to new generations through their performances. Other scholars examine how local music and dance are reformed for nationalists and cosmopolitans, (Turino 2000; Mendoza 2000). However, my research analyzes performance in these participatory <italic>encuentros</italic> as moments when <italic>son huasteco</italic> musicians exert their agency in selecting which aspects of local musical and culture they will <italic>give</italic> to the region and nation. They also decide which local practices they will <italic>keep</italic>, and which regional and other trans-local practices they will <italic>make their own</italic>. While these performances create ties between diverse Huastecan communities, the political process of folklorization and the performances of individual musicians also mark important differences among musicians and other participants along the lines of ethnicity, class and gender. My analysis adds to the understanding of sustainable development of musical patrimony through government policy, the use of local and region music and dance to empower youth, as well as how the intersections of gender, race and ethnicity impact the performance of music and identity in participatory huapangos in Mexico.
- Music