1st Draft of "The Charo Paragraph"

For a long while, StinkyLulu's threatened to write the Charo paragraph. Here's a first draft:

Charo is truly the inheritor of both Carmen Miranda's burdens & blessings. Each a skilled musician & performer, Charo and Carmen both became notorious for their persona -- a sexually extreme latina clown, mangling the English language as they mangled the image of appropriately desirable femininity. These personas -- detailed constructions of gifted comedic actresses at the height of their form -- were naturalized within U.S. popular culture as their identities, in a fashion familiar to female performers and performers of color. Indeed, each woman's name iself became a jokey cliche, a singular label for a vast collection stereotypes -- about latin women and about the excesses of U.S. popular performance and culture. The passage of time since Carmen's death has permitted some scholars and fans to rediscover, to recuperate and to redeem Carmen Miranda. Perhaps such a project is beginning for Charo. However, the Charo lesson for historians of U.S. popular performance remains. As scholars and fans alike, we remain obliged to think beyond the veneer of "the new" & "the next" so readily marketed by the U.S. entertainment industry and to look toward these historical phenomena of replication, for it is in these revivals that the most intransigent practices of repression (and resistance) might be found.

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