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Feeling Pretty: WEST SIDE STORY AND PUERTO RICAN IDENTITY DISCOURSES

Feeling Pretty: WEST SIDE STORY AND PUERTO RICAN IDENTITY DISCOURSES Page 83 Feeling Pretty WEST SIDE STORY AND PUERTO RICAN IDENTITY DISCOURSES For never was a story of more woe than this of Juliet and her Romeo. —William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet If a time-capsule is about to be buried anywhere, this film ought to be included so that possible future generations can know how an artist of ours made our most congenial theatrical form respond to the beauty in our time and to the humanity in some of its ugliness. —Stanley Kauffmann, “The Asphalt Romeo and Juliet” The ideas of the past weigh like a nightmare on the brains of the living. —Stuart Hall, “Signification, Representation, Ideology: Althusser and the Poststructuralist Debates” Frances Negrón-Muntaner There is no single American cultural product that haunts Puerto Rican identity discourses in the United States more intensely than the 1961 film, West Side Story, directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins. Although neither the first nor last American movie to portray Puerto Ricans as gang members (men) or as sassy and virginal (women), hardly any Puerto Rican cultural critic or screen actor can refrain from stating their very special relationship to West Side Story. Jennifer López, the highest paid Latina actress http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Social Text Duke University Press

Feeling Pretty: WEST SIDE STORY AND PUERTO RICAN IDENTITY DISCOURSES

Social Text , Volume 18 (2 63) – Jun 1, 2000

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2000 by Duke University Press
ISSN
0164-2472
eISSN
1527-1951
DOI
10.1215/01642472-18-2_63-83
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Page 83 Feeling Pretty WEST SIDE STORY AND PUERTO RICAN IDENTITY DISCOURSES For never was a story of more woe than this of Juliet and her Romeo. —William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet If a time-capsule is about to be buried anywhere, this film ought to be included so that possible future generations can know how an artist of ours made our most congenial theatrical form respond to the beauty in our time and to the humanity in some of its ugliness. —Stanley Kauffmann, “The Asphalt Romeo and Juliet” The ideas of the past weigh like a nightmare on the brains of the living. —Stuart Hall, “Signification, Representation, Ideology: Althusser and the Poststructuralist Debates” Frances Negrón-Muntaner There is no single American cultural product that haunts Puerto Rican identity discourses in the United States more intensely than the 1961 film, West Side Story, directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins. Although neither the first nor last American movie to portray Puerto Ricans as gang members (men) or as sassy and virginal (women), hardly any Puerto Rican cultural critic or screen actor can refrain from stating their very special relationship to West Side Story. Jennifer López, the highest paid Latina actress

Journal

Social TextDuke University Press

Published: Jun 1, 2000

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