By Hector Dominguez-Ruvalcaba
This publication seems to be at representations of the male physique, sexuality, and tool in Mexican literature and the arts. The research contains literature, visible paintings, and cinema made from the 1870s to the current, concentrating on the Porfirian regime, the Post-revolutionary period, and the decadence of the progressive nation and the emergence of the neo-liberal order within the Nineteen Eighties to the present.
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Additional resources for Modernity and the Nation in Mexican Representations of Masculinity: From Sensuality to Bloodshed (New Concepts in Latino American Cultures)
For Velarde, this sensual virility that is preserved by the representation defines Herrán’s work. In this representative semiotics and in the male image that carries implications for the national and the colonial consciousness, we can find the keys to the inner movement of modern Mexico’s imaginary history. This page intentionally left blank 3 The Perturbing Dress: Transvestism in Visual Arts This chapter describes how the representation of transvestite men interacts with Mexican culture and politics from the Porfirato to the last decades of the twentieth century.
With respect to Herrán’s works, Manuel Toussaint stated, “Herrán ha logrado no sólo el arte más mexicano que ha habido, puesto que en él viven en integridad todas las inquietudes y fuerzas latentes, sino marcar el derrotero que ha de seguir el mexicanismo en el arte cuando quiera ser algo más que pasatiempo decorativo” (13) [Herrán has achieved not only the most Mexican art ever, because his work integrates all latent forces and anxieties, but has also traced the way of Mexicanismo in art, when it is intended as more than a mere decorative pastime].
In both, effeminacy means the weakening of national virtues. Hence, effeminacy is incorporated into the discourse of the nation. Association with foreign costumes represents the limit of the national identity. It also represents the limit of virility, as transvestism has been recognized from the fears and temptations produced in a patriarchal hegemony. In the same way we can talk about prostitution and perversions (or the pathology of the “other” sexualities) that have resulted from patriarchal exclusions, cross-dressing has been invented by the patriarchy as an aberration against which virility can be defined.