Lowrider car parked in garage. Water damage on the garage walls behind the car. Black and white poster showin Jim Morrison on garage wall, hung sideways. Some spraypainted black tag on the wall. Finger of photographer slightly covering camera lens.

Lowrider

Los Angeles, 2005. (The photo is not from the book referred to in the text to the right.)

Photo: Martin Høyem

 

Lowrider Space

We take a special interest in scientific works on outlaw aesthetics here at American Ethnography Quasimonthly. And we also love us some writing on car customization. Thus, when we heard about Ben Chappell’s Lowrider Space, a new publication from the University of Texas Press, we perked up: any academic hep cat who takes a look at lowriders is cool, calm, and a solid wig as far as we’re concerned.

Lowrider Space draws on Chappell’s participant observation fieldwork among car clubs in Austin, Texas. He describes how the lowrider culture creates a social space for its participants, and he points to the value of this space for a group of people who – because of their social status in the society they live in – are often denied access to other spaces.

It’s a cool piece of research, and we’re stoked to share with you an excerpt from the book. Here’s “Regulating Lowrider Space.”

Consciousness produced by intoxicants and anaesthetics

“I realized that in that half hour under ether I had served God more distinctly and purely than I had ever done in my life before, or than I am capable of desiring to do.”

More …

Bajito y Suavecito

Jack Parsons is the grandson of pioneering anthropologist Elsie Clews Parsons, and tells us he has “a soft spot for cultural anthropology.” Check out this gallery we have put together, with his photos of New Mexico lowriders. (From Low ’n Slow: Lowriding in New Mexico; Museum of New Mexico Press, 1999).

Graduate School

From a depraved and desperate Montreal underworld, here’s a pitiless and darkly comic exposé of a dope hungry intellectual who educates himself in the art of hustling access to the contents of pharmacy cabinets.

Like Primitive Savages …

Browsing through some American wrestling magazines from the 1970’s we stumbled upon the make-believe world of apartment wrestling.

 

From Ball-Room to Hell

In 1892 Thomas Faulkner wrote, in From the Ball-Room to Hell, about “the degrading lust-creating influence of the waltz.” From his book we give you First and Last Step.

What else?

Have you got some good stuff you think American Eth­no­gra­phy Quasi­monthly should cover? Please send us an email and tell us about it!

Proposal to perfume within your region

“It is my wish to book with you for a group of 10 students coming from Germany, as they are preparing for their contracted proposal to perfume within your region.”

More on our feedback page.

 

Photo: Martin Hoyem

Back while he was doing fieldwork among lowriders in the southwestern states of USA, American Ethnography’s owner and editor Martin Hoyem photographed the people he met and their cars. We have made a selection of these photos in a gallery we call Southern California Lowriders: Los Angeles 2005.

What’s all this, then?
Black and white pen drawing of car interior with chain steering wheel.

American Ethnography is a stranger in a 1972 Riviera, sunburst yellow banged up and dirty, raving coffee madness cruising Main Street of the quiet desert town at 15 miles an hour …”

 
Record sleeve art: Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers A Night In Tunisia

Today we’re digging A Night In Tunisia by Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers.

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