How Political Singers Facilitated the Spanish Transition to Democracy, 1960-1982

Author: Esther Pérez-Villalba
Year:2007
Pages:420
ISBN:0-7734-5417-9
978-0-7734-5417-0
Price:259.95
This book explores the politics of identity in works by popular male singer-songwriters Víctor Manuel and Joaquín Sabina and in those by well-known female political singer Ana Belén between the years 1968 and 1982. It examines the connections that existed between their works and the broader Spanish context of the Transition (1960-1982) to democracy. It also explores the representations of Spanish national identity – with special reference to gender differences – that appeared in their texts between 1968 and 1982. It compares the relationship that existed between representations of the nation and national identity in their musical work and Francoist notions of Spain and Spanishness as constructed in different hegemonic discourses. Finally, this book examines some of the most relevant roles that Spanish canción de autor/a, cantautores and cantantes políticos fulfilled at the time of the Transition, especially among different anti-Francoist collectives.

Reviews

“By looking at cantautores or singer songwriters as organic intellectuals in the Gramscian way, Dr. Esther Pérez analyses and discusses the Spanish Transition from a cultural studies perspective. She presents a detailed critical analysis of the work and public lives of three important and popular performers of the Transition period, namely, Víctor Manuel, Ana Belén and Joaquín Sabina ... the originality of this book lies in looking not only at these artists’ biographies but most importantly at how their music could be experienced and understood.” - Dr. Mercedes Carbayo-Abengózar, Nottingham Trent University

“ ... this book treats a major cultural phenomenon which has not previously been studied in depth, and makes a valuable contribution to our understanding of the way that cultural processes contributed to the formation of a democratic civil society during the Spanish transition to democracy.” – Professor Jo Labanyi, Department of Spanish and Portuguese, New York University

“This study is especially impressive for its combination of approaches, producing a many-sided method which ranges beyond the song texts, to the often dramatic political conditions in which it was produced and spoke to large numbers of people ... this study is an accomplished example of an intellectual genre we need very much just now - of historical cultural studies, with a strong political conscience and purpose and a relevance to our own times.” – Dr. Richard Johnson, Professor of Cultural Studies, Nottingham Trent University

Table of Contents

Preface Dr Mercedes Carbayo Abengózar
Acknowledgments
Introduction
PART I THEORY, CONTEXT AND METHOD OF RESEARCH
1 Theorising the Nation: Gramsci, Feminism and Popular Agency
2 The Spanish Transition: Concept, Dates and Agents
3 Research Methods: Scope and Rationale
PART II SONG ANALYSIS
4 “Soy de España”: Contesting Francoist Historiography
5 “Me matan si no trabajo, y si trabajo me matan”: Reworking the Francoist Fallacy of Class Harmony
6 “La redención que busco entre tus muslos”: Love and Sex against Franco
PART III AUDIENCE RESEARCH: IN DIALOGUE WITH SOME LISTENERS TO CANCIÓN DE AUTOR/A OF THE TRANSITION
7 Listeners’ Views on Gender and Singer-songwriting
8 “Esto no es sólo una canción”: the Roles and Significance of Singer-songwriters and Political Song during the Spanish Transition
Conclusion
Appendix
Bibliography
Index