Das Spektakel des Fremden. "La Primera Exposición Gitana" (1948)
Abstract This article discusses the Primera Exposición Gitana (1948) as paradigmatic of the instrumentalization of the Gitano in the conception of Spanishness in early Francoism. By way of an introductory close reading of the folkloristic publications Gitanos de la Bética (1951) and Gitanos de Granada (1949), I will carve out the special significance of the Andalusian Gitano within the Francoist creation of a new Spanish identity. The Exposición Gitana presented members of this ethnic minority in reconstructed cave dwellings as found on Granada’s Sacromonte and thus evidences striking parallels to the human zoos during the colonial era. My aim is to demonstrate that this representation of Otherness is deeply embedded in imperial power relations and the logic of the colonial gaze. Moreover, by comparing the imagery of the exhibition with contemporaneous pictures taken by the local photographer Manuel Torres Molina, I conclude that the Exposición Gitana reflected the visual expectations of the visitors and therefore contributed to the consolidation of existing stereotypes of the Spanish Gitano.