Constructing Latino Identity in Barcelona.

Wednesday, 18 July 2018: 17:30
Oral Presentation
Victor CORONA, Universitat de Lleida-ESQ7550001G, Spain
David BLOCK, Universitat de Lleida, Spain
This paper draws on definitions of latinidad developed in North America (e.g. San Miguel, 2011; Negrón, 2014), which see it as indexing particular language-specific nationally backgrounds (Spanish- speaking North America, Central America, South America and the Caribbean) and certain emergent sociocultural practices (around language, music, food and so on). However, it recontextualizes these definitions, focussing as it does on Catalonia, and the city of Barcelona, and not, for example, the United States. More specifically, it examines how being a young Latino in Catalonia is not a casual occurrence; it is shaped and conditioned simultaneously by a series of conditions. These include the political economic backdrop of Catalonia; ongoing discursive activity related to language and culture that intersect with Catalan/Spanish bilingualism; Latinos’ symbolic self-positioning, that is, their repertoire of behaviours and semiotic activity; and finally, how Latinos are positioned by others, that is how young latinos are invented and invested with meaning by non-Latinos in Catalan society. We believe it is important to focus on the topic of latinidad in Catalonia, and to do so in this specific way, because it allows us to question various aspects of the bilingual dynamics of Catalonia as well as the kind of multicultural society that it is. It also provides us with a window on inequalities in Catalan society, based, above all, on class, race, nationality and gender.