The Narcocorridos Movimiento Alterado (2008-2012): Representations of gender and gender relations in a world of hierarchies, drugs and violence
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The Movimiento Alterado is comprised of twelve artists/groups signed to the TMG record label. They have been reinventing and rejuvenating the narcocorrido music genre by producing a new wave of narcocorridos, ballads about the drug trade, with lyrics more explicit and more graphic than ever before. The M|A emerged during one of the most violent periods of Mexico's history (2006-2012) and their songs mimic the high levels of brutality, with frequent imagery of torture, killings and dismemberment of bodies. Furthermore, the songs of the M|A illuminate a certain kind of cultural valorisation of gender stereotypes in Mexico and it is thus surprising that little research exists on gender relations in the songs. By drawing on data from fieldwork carried out by this researcher in Mexico in 2012, as well as on the theory of hegemonic masculinity as developed by R.W. Connell, this thesis will address issues of gender which are present in the lyrics and music videos of the Movimiento Alterado and assess whether they reflect the reality of this world where drug trafficking and gangland violence are the daily norm. It will further explore whether visions of gender only serve to perpetuate existing gender stereotypes of Mexico rather than challenge them.