ERIC Number: ED454018
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
Hey Pachuco! "That Zoot Suit Can Cause a Riot."
Giordano, Ralph G.
Popular music and films can become vehicles in the study of racial prejudices and stereotypes and provide a framework for understanding the popular opinions of a particular era. At the College of Staten Island, City University of New York, a course incorporates popular music and videos into the study of historical accounts of the 20th century focusing on racial stereotypes. The sometimes-obscure Los Angeles "Zoot Suit Riots" of 1943 come alive with the combination of colorful, energetic, visual and musical references. This paper looks at some themes examined in the course: the social history associated with the "swing" music of the 1930s and 1940s; the reemergence of swing music in the 1990s; the Mexican American "pachuco" youth culture of 1940s Los Angeles, with its flamboyant fashions in clothing; the "railroading" of pachuco youths during the Sleepy Lagoon murder trial and subsequent riots; swing music in films and accompanying portrayals of Black-White segregation; early television's treatment of minorities; the movement of 1980s "grunge" bands into swing music; and social statements in the lyrics of modern swing music. (SV)
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California (Los Angeles)