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date: 17 October 2019

Border musiclocked

  • Estevan César Azcona


The two thousand mile border between Mexico and the United States is among the longest and most significant found in the world. The border that separates these two countries—sometimes in sand, other times in water—is also perceived as an imaginary line that separates “America” from Latin America, rich from poor, brown indigenous people of the South from the white settlers of the North; there may not be another border in the world of such stark distinctions from one side to the other. Contemporary views of borders, however, also suggest that these geo-political contact zones are as much locations of historical connection and continuity as they are locations of difference. The transnational movement of capital, labor, and media, however, are now more responsive to the realities of globalization rather than the borders of nation-states. The music cultures that exist along the border are largely ethnic Mexican but are also defined by indigenous nations that reside in the region, as well as a diversity of other ethnic groups that have made the border home over the past 200 years and more, reflecting both sides of the border in traditional and modern ways. As a region, the Mexico–US border is now, arguably, as much a distinct cultural area as it is the meeting point between two nation-states....

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Latin American Music Review