Challenging the Archive: Repertoire and the Poetics of Political Protest in New Mexico

Kirstin Erickson (University of Arkansas)

This paper explores the contestation of monuments that commemorate Spanish conquistador Juan de Oñate. Using Diana Taylor’s theory of the archive and the repertoire (2003), I suggest we view such monuments as an “archive,” and dramatic performances of interrogation as “repertoire.” I first analyze the recent defacement and removal of Oñate monuments as a performative subversion of the archive. Then, I examine a spoken word performance by a Hispana poet who challenges a-critical memorialization. Through these two modes of vernacular performance, Nuevomexicano actors re-inscribe cultural memory, confront authoritative representations, and offer nuanced understandings of both the past and the present.

Part of 05-13 Material Narratives, Friday, November 03, 10:30 am–12:30 pm