Migration and Music in Texas and Chile: Mestizaje, Hybridization, and Identity

Monday, 11 July 2016: 16:00
Location: Hörsaal 14 (Juridicum)
Oral Presentation
Jeffrey HALLEY, University of Texas San Antonio, USA
Marisol FACUSE, University of Chile, Chile
In South Texas in the United States, Mexican American music, particularly the popular form of Conjunto, has been influenced by new waves of immigration from Mexico and Central America. Both Norteño and Banda have come on to the music scene, with new club venues and radio stations catering to new immigrants. Similarly, in Chile, the migration of individuals from Peru and Colombia has imported new musical forms. The purpose of this research is to study and compare the migration of musical forms in relation to the reconfiguration of identities socialization, and incorporation of transnational migrants into host communities. By utilizing ethnographies and life history interviews, this project will critically compare the migrant experiences of musical forms in and around San Antonio, Texas and Santiago, Chile. The authors posit that musical practices foment the creation of sociality in collectives of individuals from diverse regions, be they from Mexico, Central America, or Peru, Colombia or Ecuador.  A second question posed is, to what degree or not is a new mestizaje identity being created?  Or does the music help create enclaves that help immigrants retain their roots? For the purposes of this research, the new identities being formed speak to both the lived realities of the migrant peoples as well as the possibility of musical hybridization. The researchers are seeking to understand musical forms as representing organic intellectuals and, in that sense, more authentic, vis-à-vis commodified and rationalized forms of music existing in the hegemonic host culture.