The “Here and Now”: Stories of Relevancy from the Borderlands

Ana R. Alonso-Minutti


This essay takes a stance that aims to destabilize music history narratives that confine music according to nation-state divisions in order to embrace the study of musical flows across borders. Drawing from her experience teaching in border states—California, Texas, and New Mexico—the author discusses the ways in which emphasizing the cultural complexities of expressive cultures at the U.S.-Mexico border provides multiple pedagogical possibilities for inclusion of Hispanic musics in the curriculum. Moreover, developing pedagogical connections with the “here and now” creates diverse levels of relevancy in music history teaching. A re-envisioning of the music history curriculum must not only advocate for a diversification of repertories, but also for a deep engagement with local contexts where contentions of class, race, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality are at the core of the musical experience.

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ISSN 2155-109X