Dr Lisa Shaw, Reader in Brazilian Cultural Studies at the University of Liverpool, has recently co-edited a book with Professor Rob Stone (University of Birmingham) on the use of songs in films from Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking worlds. Entitled Screening Songs in Hispanic and Lusophone Cinema, the volume is published by Manchester University Press.
The volume illustrates how – rather than simply helping to tell the story of – songs in Hispanic and Lusophone cinema commonly upset the hierarchy of the visual over the aural, thereby rendering their hearing a complex and rich subject for analysis. Screening Songs in Hispanic and Lusophone Cinema comprises essays on soundtracks of films as varied as City of God, All About My Mother, Bad Education and Buena Vista Social Club, which are analysed alongside those of lesser-known works that range from the melodramas of Mexican cinema’s golden age to Brazilian and Portuguese musical comedies from the 1940s and 1950s. Fiction films are studied alongside documentaries, the work of established directors like Pedro Almodovar, Carlos Saura and Nelson Pereira dos Santos alongside that of emerging filmmakers, and performances by iconic stars like Caetano Veloso and Chavela Vargas alongside the songs of Spanish Gypsy groups, Mexican folk songs and contemporary Brazilian rap.
The publication of the book will be officially celebrated at a forthcoming book launch at the Cornerstone, Manchester, Friday 17 May, 6pm-8.30pm.