Arts Building, Riverside, CA 92507
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In this Florence Bayz Music Series Event, we will explore a talk drawing on Dr. Richard T. Rodríguez’s most recent book which explores the traffic between British post-punk music and Latinx communities in the United States.


Program Description

In "A Kiss Across the Ocean," Dr. Richard T. Rodríguez examines the relationship between British post-punk musicians and their Latinx audiences in the United States since the 1980s. Melding memoir with cultural criticism, Dr. Rodríguez spotlights a host of influential bands and performers including Siouxsie and the Banshees, Adam Ant, Bauhaus, Soft Cell, Frankie Goes to Hollywood, and Pet Shop Boys. He recounts these bands’ importance for him and other Latinx kids and discusses their frequent identification with these bands’ glamorous performance of difference. Whether it was Siouxsie Sioux drawing inspiration from Latinx contemporaries and cultural practices or how Soft Cell singer Marc Almond’s lyrics were attuned to the vibrancy of queer Latinidad, Rodríguez shows how Latinx culture helped shape British post-punk. He traces the fandom networks that link these groups across space and time to illuminate how popular music establishes and facilitates intimate relations across the Atlantic. In so doing, he demonstrates how the music and styles that have come to define the 1980s hold significant sway over younger generations equally enthused by their matchlessly pleasurable and political reverberations.



Dr. Richard T. Rodríguez is a Professor of English and Media and Cultural Studies at the University of California, Riverside. He is the author of "Next of Kin: The Family in Chicano/a Cultural Politics" (2009) and "A Kiss Across the Ocean: Transatlantic Intimacies of British Post-Punk and U.S. Latinidad" (2022), both published by Duke University Press. He is currently finishing a book of poems—Exemplars and Accomplices—about his time living in Chicago.



Please pick up your free parking permit at the Lot 1 kiosk. Note that the permit is only valid for 1.5-hours, from 11:30 AM - 1 PM, on the event date.

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