Rocking the Boat: Migration and Race in Contemporary Spanish Music

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University of Toronto Press, 2018 - Electronic books - 183 pages

Silvia Bermúdez's fascinating study reveals how Spanish popular music, produced between 1980 and 2013, was the first cultural site to engage in critical debate about ethnicity and race in relation to the immigration patterns that have been changing the social landscape of Spanish society since the late 1970s.

In Rocking the Boat, Bermúdez examines the lyrics of songs by both renowned and up and coming artists to illuminate how these new migrants challenged Spain's notions of homogeneity, boundaries, accommodation, and incorporation. Bermúdez observes that immigration has had such a significant influence on Spanish society that the tattered boats, seen to this day on the shores of Spain and throughout the Mediterranean Sea, have become inverted emblems of the ships that were once symbols of great power and economic development. Rocking the Boat is a nuanced account of how popular urban music shaped the discourse on immigration, transnational migrants, and racialization in Spain's new social landscape.

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About the author (2018)

Silvia Bermúdez is a professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

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