Border Matters locates the study of Chicano culture in a broad social context. Jose Saldivar examines issues of representation and expression in a diverse, exciting assortment of texts--corridos, novels, poems, short stories, punk and hip-hop music, ethnography, paintings, performance, art, and essays. Saldivar provides a sophisticated model for a new kind of U.S. cultural studies, one that challenges the homogeneity of U.S. nationalism and popular culture by foregrounding the contemporary experiences and historical circumstances facing Chicanos and Chicanas. This intellectually adventurous, politically engaged study applies borderlands and diaspora theory to Chicano cultural practices in a way that permanently changes our understanding of both the Chicano experience and the meaning of cultural theory. Defying national (and nationalistic) paradigms of culture, Saldivar argues that the culture of the borderlands is trans-national, constituting a social space in which new relations, hybrid cultures, and multi-voiced aesthetics are negotiated. Saldivar's critical readings treat culture as a social force and reveal the presence of social contexts within cultural texts.
Border Matters maps out a new terrain for the study of culture, reshaping the way we understand migration, national identity, and intellectual inquiry itself.
Jose David Saldivar is Professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. He is the author of The Dialectics of Our America: Genealogy, Cultural Critique and Literary History (1991).