Theater 25AC: Performance in América

In Transition: A Conversation on Queerness in América

'How does Jake Rodriguez from Tales of the City perform his trans and Latinx identities and defy the gentrified performance of queerness?'

Whiteness: A Construct that Restricts Latinx Bodies in Minds in Dance

An essay critically exploring student experiences in dance and whiteness.

Gentrification: Urban Uplift or Modern Conquest

An essay on "Los Dos Developers" in Who Shot La Miguelito by Sean San José and gentrification as the manifestation of westward expansion.

Untended Grievances and Leftover Destinies

An exploration of a student’s own family history and the context of international adoption as paralleled to the themes of Mother Road.

Street Art of the Mission District: A Projection of Mestiza Consciousness

An exploration of how the street art of the Mission District teaches us that from liminality can stem monumental creativity.

Reimagining the Founding of America

The musical, Hamilton, perpetuates mythos on founding of the US; legitimizing a history touted by white historians despite actors of color performing it.

Decolonizing Brujeria: The Gestures of Spiritual Indigenous Practices

Demystifies the negative connotations caused by institutions of whitenss and imperialism surrounding brujeria.

About the Course Assignment

This course considers America as contested territory, where multiple Americas are not just written but also performed. By studying performance we look at how different meanings of America have been constructed over time. This class especially focuses on race intersecting with class and gender in the United States towards stronger anti-racist and anti-imperialist collective strategies for artists, scholars, and other cultural producers. Course materials include plays, live performances, popular media, music, gestures, and symbols. which we examine in written assignments, discussion, a midterm, and a final web-based essay project. 

Instructional Materials

My whole life has changed in such a dramatic way over the course of this semester that I am probably not even the same person as when I first sat in on lectures. I can’t help but think that it has some bearing on this project. It helped me make so many connections with my peers and with the theatre community at Cal.
Student
Screenshot of homepage of project

In Transition: A Conversation on Queerness in América

This Adobe spark essay explores the central question, “How does Jake Rodriguez from Tales of the City perform his trans and Latinx identities, and in doing so, defy the gentrified performance of queerness?”

screenshot of homepage of project: Whiteness

WhiteNESS: A Construct that Restricts Latinx Bodies and Minds in Dance

This spark essay critically explores the student’s experience in dance classes, particularly an Afro-Samba class in Berkeley, CA, and the ways that whiteness interacts with their own experience in dance as a Latinx person.

Screenshot of project homepage: Gentrification

Gentrification: Urban Uplift or Modern Conquest?

This essay utilizes the role of “Los Dos Developers” in Sean San José’s play Who Shot La Miguelito to explore how gentrification is a modern manifestation of the ethos of westward expansion and manifest destiny.

Untended Grievances and Leftover Destinies: The New American Family

Untended Grievances and Leftover Destinies

This essay explores the student’s own family history and the context of international adoption as paralleled to the themes of the New American Family in the play, Mother Road.

Street Art of the Mission District

Street Art of the Mission District: A Projection of Mestiza Consciousness

This essay explores how the street art of the Mission District teaches us that from liminality can stem monumental creativity.

Reimagining The Founding of America

Reimagining the Founding of América

This essay argues that the musical, Hamilton, serves to perpetuate mythos such as manifest destiny & the bootstrap myth surrounding the founding of the United States; thus, legitimizing a history usually touted by white historians despite actors of color performing it.

DECOLONIZING BRUJERIA: THE GESTURES OF SPIRITUAL INDIGENOUS PRACTICES

Decolonizing Brujeria: The Gestures of Spiritual Indigenous Practices

This essay seeks to demystify and debunk the negative connotations surrounding brujeria by arguing that the reason for condemnation of these practices is entirely due to institutions of whiteness and imperialism.

Angela Marino

Associate Professor, Theater, Dance and Performance Studies, field: Latinx Studies

We had tremendous support...I want to really applaud the program for being there and showing up and doing these incredibly interesting and engaging talks, down to the brass tacks of how-tos to the more theoretical.
Angela Marino