Rihanna: Barbados World-Gurl in Global Popular Culture
by Hilary Beckles
Publication Date: Mar 01, 2015
List Price: $32.00
Format: Paperback, 222 pages
Imprint: University of the West Indies Press
Publisher: University of the West Indies Press
Parent Company: University of the West Indies Press
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Rihanna is arguably the most commercially successful Caribbean artist in history. She is Barbadian and has been unwavering in publicly articulating her national and regional belongings. Still, there have been varied responses to Rihanna’s ascendancy, both in the Barbadian public and Caribbean community at large - responses that reveal as much about our own national/regional anxieties as they do about the artist herself. The cutting edge, boundary-transgressing, cultural icon Rihanna is certainly subject to moralistic scrutiny from her global audiences as well; however, the essays in this collection purposely seek to de-centre the dominance of the Euro-American gaze, focusing instead on considerations of the Caribbean artist and her oeuvre from a Caribbean postcolonial corpus of academic inquiry. To this end, Rihanna: Barbados World Gurl in Global Popular Culture brings together U.S. and Caribbean based scholars to discuss issues of class, gender, sexuality, race, culture, and economy. Using the concept of diasporic citizenship as a central theoretical frame, this book intervenes in current questions of national and transnational circuits of exchange as they pertain to the commoditization and movement of culture, knowledge, values, and identity. The contributors- drawing from literature, history, musicology, sociology, cultural studies, feminist, gender, and queer studies, the creative/cultural industries and political science - approach the subjects of Rihanna, globalization, gender and sexuality, commerce, transnationalism, Caribbean regionalism, and Barbadian national identity and development, from different disciplinary and at times radically divergent perspectives. At the same time, the essays collectively work through the limitations, possibilities and promise of our best Caribbean imaginings.
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