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Choreographing Modern Mexico: Anna Pavlova in Mexico City (1919)

Choreographing Modern Mexico: Anna Pavlova in Mexico City (1919) <jats:p> In this article, I examine the role that Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova played in Mexico's attempts to produce an embodied mestizo modernity that resonated with efforts to construct a post-revolutionary modern nation. After the revolution of 1910, cultural modernization consisted in the integration of Mexico's histories of indigenous civilizations and European influences in the production of expressive cultures intended to be local in character but universal in their appeal. I argue that Pavlova's performances from her Europeanized ballet repertoire as well as her balleticized rendition of Mexican folk dances helped to create a social space in which Mexican elites could reaffirm their affinity with international cosmopolitan classes while also attempting to retain a sense of Mexican distinctiveness. I contextualize my analysis by attending to racial and class formations implicated in the production of Mexico as a modern nation within the context of colonialist legacies informing notions of Western cultural modernity. </jats:p> http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Modernist Cultures Edinburgh University Press

Choreographing Modern Mexico: Anna Pavlova in Mexico City (1919)

Modernist Cultures , Volume 9 (1): 80 – May 1, 2014

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
© Edinburgh University Press 2014
Subject
Articles; Film, Media and Cultural Studies
ISSN
2041-1022
eISSN
1753-8629
DOI
10.3366/mod.2014.0075
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

<jats:p> In this article, I examine the role that Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova played in Mexico's attempts to produce an embodied mestizo modernity that resonated with efforts to construct a post-revolutionary modern nation. After the revolution of 1910, cultural modernization consisted in the integration of Mexico's histories of indigenous civilizations and European influences in the production of expressive cultures intended to be local in character but universal in their appeal. I argue that Pavlova's performances from her Europeanized ballet repertoire as well as her balleticized rendition of Mexican folk dances helped to create a social space in which Mexican elites could reaffirm their affinity with international cosmopolitan classes while also attempting to retain a sense of Mexican distinctiveness. I contextualize my analysis by attending to racial and class formations implicated in the production of Mexico as a modern nation within the context of colonialist legacies informing notions of Western cultural modernity. </jats:p>

Journal

Modernist CulturesEdinburgh University Press

Published: May 1, 2014

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