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Welcome to FairylandQueer Miami before 1940$
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Julio Capó

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781469635200

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469635200.001.0001

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Miami as Stage

Miami as Stage

(p.125) 4 Miami as Stage
Welcome to Fairyland

Julio Capó Jr.

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter builds on chapter three in taking seriously boosters’ framing of Miami as a fairyland. It pays particular attention to the ways the city was “staged,” both literally and figuratively, in the American imagination. It notes how theatricality, spectacle, and publicity collided in the urban center to help sell the fairyland to outsiders. It explores some of the powerful metaphors used to market the city’s transgressive identity. Race and empire in particular played key roles in marketing the city for tourist consumption, as Miami boosters measured their city’s success against developments in the Caribbean, especially in Cuba. The chapter also explores the ways the literal stage—in both theater and film—located Miami as a site for white leisure and recreation. Underpinned as it was by racist and colonial practices and ideologies, the idea of Miami as a site for pushing the boundaries of gender and sexuality entered the U.S. imagination.

Keywords:   Miami and Miami Beach, Cuba, Caribbean, Bahamas, Tourism, Metaphor, Stage, Race, Performing transgression, Prohibition

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