The production, narratives, and performances of three fusion rock bands are examined in their explicit and symbolic engagement with different sources of social and cultural criticism, and within the context of the historical changes of Peruvian society that started in the second half of the twentieth century. Particular attention is given to these bands’ reworking of notions of gender and racial identity, authenticity, and modernity. Breaking with the recent past, the bands’ different projects celebrate indigenous rural masculinity as an important and visible ingredient of their own embodied mestizo identity with the explicit purpose of re-presenting or re-packaging some elements of indigenous cultures, appealing to a socially and culturally diverse young audience. This trend represents an expression of important changes in Peruvian society’s racial formation, which are allowing for newly elaborated identities that defy the hegemonic assumption that the indigenous identity is one urban mestizos have to walk away from. The bands whose work is presented in this chapter are part of a wide variety of aesthetic expressions, self-defined as hybrids, which have emerged from diverse cultural origins, with the deliberate purpose of questioning the established boundaries between different aesthetics normally associated with particular social groups.
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