This essay is a mapping of Latinx queer listening practices and spaces, such as bars and restaurants, as forms of resistance to gentrification in the Silver Lake neighborhood of Los Angeles. Using a framework called “joteria listening,” and following the route of a performance event and ritual called LA Queer Posada in 2011, the author charts a sonic trail composed of sounds, songs, and memories of places and people in Silver Lake displaced by gentrification and historical erasure. Drawing from sound studies, performance studies and joteria studies, and using oral histories, interviews, archival sources, and ethnography, this essay offers innovative ways to think of queer Latinx sound and space as it adds layers to the palimpsestic map of Silver Lake and beyond. While listening to urban hauntings, sounds of loss, celebration and resistance, it offers new ways of remembering, performing and imagining community, futurity, and a more just world.
Jotería Listening: Sonic Trails and Collective Musical Playlists as Resistance to Gentrification in Silver Lake
Eddy Francisco Alvarez Jr., an interdisciplinary scholar, is assistant professor in the Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies at California State University, Fullerton. He obtained a B.A. and M.A. in Spanish from California State University, Northridge, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Chicana and Chicano Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara. His academic and creative work has appeared in Journal of Lesbian Studies, TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly, Aztlan: A Journal of Chicano Studies, Sounding Out!: The Sound Studies Blog, Label Me Latina/o, The Rumpus, Hispanic Outlook, and other journals, edited books, and online publications. He is a co-editor of Transmovimientos: Latinx Queer Migrations, Bodies and Spaces (University of Nebraska Press, 2021).
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Eddy Francisco Alvarez; Jotería Listening: Sonic Trails and Collective Musical Playlists as Resistance to Gentrification in Silver Lake. Journal of Popular Music Studies 1 December 2021; 33 (4): 126–151. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/jpms.2021.33.4.126
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