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Talking Back to Globalization

Texts and Practices

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Edited By Brian Michael Goss, Mary Rachel Gould and Joan Pedro-Carañana

Globalization is one of the most widely circulated, high-stakes buzzwords of the past generation; yet discussion of the topic is often encased in paradox and contention over what globalization is, to whom and where it may (or may not) apply, and to what effect. In Talking Back to Globalization: Texts and Practices, contributors provide a series of case studies that stress the interplay between culture, politics, and commerce.
Interviews with Natalie Fenton and Radha S. Hegde survey globalization and its interpenetration with the spheres of journalism, activism, social media, and identity. The overview furnished by the interviews is followed by the volume’s two additional extended sections, «Texts» and «Practices.»
Chapters in the «Texts» section seek clues about globalization through its insinuation into mediated forms. The diverse selection of cases cover television, films, online travel web pages, blues music, and the political valences of Portuguese neo-fado.
Chapters in the «Practices» section address more diffused cases than media texts. Their analyses largely orient toward institutional concomitants of globalization that precede the subject’s experience of it. Chapters cover the trajectory of the European university, campaigns to shape journalistic practice during the Cold War, the posture of intellectuals vis-à-vis globalization, and the ideology that animates the Facebook experience.
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Chapter Six: “Ai, é tão bom ser pequenino!”: OqueStrada’s Fado-Chanson-Ska and Local Sustainable Capitalism

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CHAPTER SIX

“Ai, é tão bom ser pequenino!”

OqueStrada’s Fado-Chanson-Ska and Local Sustainable Capitalism

MICHAEL ARNOLD



In the beginning we said it was an anti-crisis music—no microphones, nothing. We just go and do it.

—MARTA MIRANDA

I met Marta Miranda, vocalist and lyricist for the six-piece indie neofado band OqueStrada, on March 28, 2011, for an interview in the band’s headquarters in Almada, Portugal. During the fall of 2010, I had been conducting ethnographic fieldwork research in Madrid and Lisbon for my dissertation, Saudade, Duende, and Feedback: The Hybrid Voices of Twenty-First-Century Neofado and Neoflamenco, when I noticed a recurring track list in the various restaurants, bars, and stores I had been frequenting in Lisbon’s Bairro Alto neighborhood. The music was an enchanting mélange of orchestral-ska-kuduro beats and horns, chanson-morna vocals and accordion, a frenzied Portuguese guitar with fado lyrical references, all wrapped up in a kind of melodic and rhythmic wall-of-sound chaos that consistently left me with a feeling of nostalgia for a time I had never experienced. It was OqueStrada’s 2009 release Tasca Beat, it was seemingly everywhere, and it was exactly what I had been looking for. Miranda graciously agreed to meet with me for a few hours to discuss everything from the global financial crisis to OqueStrada’s early days performing a busking musical theater tour that coincided with the introduction of the euro in Portugal in early...

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