Event Title

Piedras y Promesas: Musical Resistance to the Debt Crisis in Puerto Rico

Location

Science Center A154

Start Date

10-27-2017 4:30 PM

End Date

10-27-2017 5:50 PM

Abstract

The purpose of this research project is to analyze the relationship between leftist Puerto Rican activism and Puerto Rican Hip Hop and Reggaeton, using music during the Puerto Rican Debt Crisis of the 2010s as a case study. This project focuses on how artists like Vladi and Sebastian .Otero contribute to political discourses and resistance efforts in response to the Debt Crisis in Puerto Rico. I build on Petra Rivera-Rideau’s scholarship on Reggaeton and its contestation of notions of racial democracy in Puerto Rico, and Juan Flores’ work on Salsa and social activism in New York’s Puerto Rican diasporic communities. In this project, I utilize ethnomusicological research methods such as lyrical, orchestrational, and production analysis, paired with a comprehensive understanding of the history of Puerto Rican Hip Hop and Reggaeton, and Puerto Rican popular music broadly, while concurrently examining the intricacies of the Debt Crisis through legislative shifts, economic reports, social media, and journalist work. All this in order to explore how these activist musicians bolster contemporary anti-colonial activism through elaborating on the musical activist work established by previous generations of progressive musicians. Their work situates US colonial measures as part of a long history of colonialism in Puerto Rico, and identifies the artists themselves as part of a parallel lineage of musical resistance developed in earlier Hip Hop and Reggaeton, as well as other, older styles of Puerto Rican music.

Notes

Session II, Panel 9 - Political | Positioning
Moderator: Jennifer Garcia, Assistant Professor of Politics

Major

Comparative American Studies; Technology in Music & Related Arts

Award

Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF)

Project Mentor(s)

Gina Perez, Comparative American Studies

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Oct 27th, 4:30 PM Oct 27th, 5:50 PM

Piedras y Promesas: Musical Resistance to the Debt Crisis in Puerto Rico

Science Center A154

The purpose of this research project is to analyze the relationship between leftist Puerto Rican activism and Puerto Rican Hip Hop and Reggaeton, using music during the Puerto Rican Debt Crisis of the 2010s as a case study. This project focuses on how artists like Vladi and Sebastian .Otero contribute to political discourses and resistance efforts in response to the Debt Crisis in Puerto Rico. I build on Petra Rivera-Rideau’s scholarship on Reggaeton and its contestation of notions of racial democracy in Puerto Rico, and Juan Flores’ work on Salsa and social activism in New York’s Puerto Rican diasporic communities. In this project, I utilize ethnomusicological research methods such as lyrical, orchestrational, and production analysis, paired with a comprehensive understanding of the history of Puerto Rican Hip Hop and Reggaeton, and Puerto Rican popular music broadly, while concurrently examining the intricacies of the Debt Crisis through legislative shifts, economic reports, social media, and journalist work. All this in order to explore how these activist musicians bolster contemporary anti-colonial activism through elaborating on the musical activist work established by previous generations of progressive musicians. Their work situates US colonial measures as part of a long history of colonialism in Puerto Rico, and identifies the artists themselves as part of a parallel lineage of musical resistance developed in earlier Hip Hop and Reggaeton, as well as other, older styles of Puerto Rican music.