Listening to the delinquent voice
in The Spanish quinqui film
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This chapter examines the broader social and political resonance of the delinquent voice in cine quinqui through an analysis of Deprisa, deprisa/Fast, Fast (Carlos Saura, 1981) and Yo, ‘el Vaquilla’/ I, ‘el Vaquilla’ (José Antonio de la Loma, 1985). The vocal performances of criminal non-actors, many of whom had no prior experience of speaking into microphones, provided Spanish narrative film with a naturalism that had rarely been heard. The chapter explores how the use of direct sound in these films registered the spontaneity of their voices within their immediate geographical surroundings, an effect which also emphasised their agency and the testimonial charge of their performances. It further explores how moral panics frequently swirled around the delinquent slang and voice. It also considers the political function of the voice of Juan José Moreno Cuenca, who became an unofficial spokesperson for penal reform in Spain.

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