Trim: 6 x 9
978-0-7391-9749-3 • Hardback • July 2015 • $102.00 • (£78.00)
978-0-7391-9751-6 • Paperback • July 2017 • $47.99 • (£37.00)
978-0-7391-9750-9 • eBook • July 2015 • $45.50 • (£35.00)
Tanya González is associate professor in the English Department at Kansas State University.
Eliza Rodriguez y Gibson is associate professor in the Department of Chicana/o Studies at Loyola Marymount University.
Chapter 1.With His Spatula in His Hand: Remaking Masculinity and Familia
Chapter 2. First Class Tickets to Mexico!: Laughing at Deportation
Chapter 3. Life’s A Drag: Identity as Queer Performance
Chapter 4. Bringing Sexy Back: The Complexities of Latina Sexuality on Ugly Betty
Chapter 5. Wake Up Betty!: Feminism, Neoliberalism and the American Dream
González and Rodriguez y Gibson use a ‘funny looking’ lens to analyze the popular television series Ugly Betty (2006–10). Featuring minority characters and taking a progressive stance on LGBTQ issues, the sitcom resides ‘on the border’—on one hand acclaimed for avoiding cliché, on the other derided for ‘humorous and campy manipulation of stereotypes.’ Embracing the ambiguities of borderland culture, the authors observe the main character’s attempt at auto-defining what it means to be a second-generation Mexican American/Chicana engaging with ‘race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality.’ Each chapter highlights specific episodes that make fun and make sense of a particular topic within Chicana/o culture. The series and thus this book give alternative representations of Latino masculinity and ‘familia.’ The authors also address immigration issues such as separation of families, adaptation of recent immigrants, and assimilation into mainstream culture of subsequent generations. They reflect on sexually charged masculine and feminine roles and new interpretations of Latina sexuality. This book illustrates a progressive ‘Latinidad’ that challenges the inequalities and injustices at the foundations of the American dream. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students, researchers, faculty.
— Choice Reviews
In Humor and Latina/o Camp in “Ugly Betty”: Funny Looking, Tanya González and Eliza Rodriguez y Gibson provide a much-needed addition to the slim scholarly canon of book-length studies in Latina/o humor.... Humor and Latina/o Camp in “Ugly Betty”: Funny Looking provides an excellent and accessible introduction to Latina/o studies theory and television analysis, making this text valuable for scholars and students in under-graduate media studies as well as Latina/o studies courses. The authors’ close readings of a third of the show’s episodes provide multiple examples of how Ugly Betty’s humor is both complicit in and critical of the American dream and how the show’s use of camp and stereotype complicate representations of Latinos/as in popular culture.
— Studies in American Humor
González and Rodriguez y Gibson show us how Ugly Betty cleverly explores complex social issues surrounding ethnicity, race, gender, identity, and sexuality through its comedic repurposing of stereotypes created and reinforced by mainstream media. This book offers a critical approach to understanding the show’s parodic yet subversive treatment of these myths from within the framework of popular cultural production.
— Patricia M. Montilla, Western Michigan University
González and Rodriguez y Gibson offer a sophisticated reading of the show’s engagement with latinidad through the use of humor, critical camp, and queer aesthetics. With the theory of 'funny looking,' the book shows how the humorous and non-normative work together, helping us to think critically about the relationship between Latinidad and neoliberalism, a refreshing approach that makes an incisive contribution to television studies, Chicana/o cultural studies, and queer studies.
— Marci McMahon, The University of Texas Pan-American