The online video “How to be a Cholo” is demonstrative of the potential that YouTube has to be a decolonial space where the reinvention of Chicano archetypes is possible. In this video, creator Eric G. Ochoa and his alter ego, Ego the Cholo, engage in humorous commentary that questions the stereotypes that have been ascribed to male Latinos through the Chicano archetypes. From this viewpoint we explore how new media facilitates the renegotiation of recurring Latino archetypes by explaining the role media had in illustrating bandits, pachucos and cholos. We also demonstrate how the conflation of the three archetypes (bandit, lover and buffoon) creates a type of humor that serves as a weapon of the marginalized by breaking down scenes in the video. In conducting an in-depth content analysis of the video, we found that Ochoa rearticulates the bandido archetype by contesting three particular characteristics that are ascribed to cholos: delinquency, masculinity, and appearance. Finally, we propose that YouTube itself has the potential to be a social space of self-affirmative cultural production citing “How to be a Cholo” as evidence.
‘How to be a Cholo’: Reinventing a Chicano Archetype on YouTube
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