Talking trash: Performing home and anti-home in Austin's salsa culture

Deborah Kapchan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Austin, Texas, has long been recognized for its racial and ethnic segregation. Policies created in 1927 officially segregated the city, and the public landscape has remained divided. How does a cosmopolitan community of difference constitute itself against the dominant Anglo culture of this Texan city? Analyzing the speech genre of "trash talk" in salsa-club culture, I demonstrate how affect is created in language and how this speech genre co-occurs with other aesthetic practices to produce a sense of belonging across boundaries of race and class. The tension between "home" and "anti-home" creates affective and discursive engagement, mitigating paradox in spaces of alterity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)361-377
Number of pages17
JournalAmerican Ethnologist
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 2006


  • Affect
  • Class
  • Home
  • Language
  • Music
  • Salsa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology


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