Mujercitos by Susana Vargas
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Publisher: Editorial RM
The results of detailed research from Susana Vargas and art critic Cuauhtémoc Medina, Mujercitos gathers photographs of men dressed as women featured in the periodical Alarma!, known as a nota roja or "red page" newspaper for its bloody content, from the 1960s to the 1980s. This volume collects a selection of key Mexican newsprint tearsheets, with the original layout and typography, each of which represents a mujercito, or "effeminate man," in a highly sexualized, objectified way. Vargas' contextualizing research explores the ways in which these photographs, printed in sensationalistic "true-crime" newspapers, participate in the larger national imaginary of non-normative sexualities in Mexico. In studying these representations of mujercitos, Vargas further traces Anglo-North American theories of gender/sex performativity onto Mexican society, only to discover the multitude of ways in which the relation between gender, sex, sexual orientation and desire is permeated with concerns of race and class in Mexican culture.