It was during the 1930s when, in Harlem, New York, arose the Drapers, while in France, during the Nazi occupation, a lot of young men expressed their inconformity through Swing, Jazz and Bebop. It was known as the Zazous movement.
In North America, a similar style came to represent freedom, self-determination and even rebellion around the same time — the zoot suit.
A Pachuco is a Mexican-American who is associated with the zoot style, even if there is a controversy about the true meaning of the word. There is a theory that the word Pachuco has actually the same meaning as “punk.”
The latest dieselpunk edition of the Spanish language magazine El Investigador is dedicated to this Latin American zoot style. Not only because it is a movement that appeals to people outside Mexico as well but because retrofuturism as such is more than just a recreationist movement. It is more than a romantic longing for a past that wasn’t. It is the combination of different eras seasoned with the individualism who are able to integrate the retrofuturist style with the modern day world.
The nineteenth edition of the magazine has inspiring and informative articles about fashion, film, music, radio, the history of Mexican involvement in the Second World War and a lot of Pachuquismo. Visit El Investigador‘s blog or download it for free (PDF). An English language version is available here.
As the Pachucos say: ¡Pásesela suave, ese!