Queer and insufficiently Spanish: tensions of gender and national identity around the transnational stardom of Luis Mariano Articles uri icon



publication date

  • April 2021

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1939-2397

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1939-2400


  • During the 1950s, Luis Mariano was the main star of French film musicals. Born in Spain, but exiled to France after the beginning of the Spanish Civil War, the artist starred in several successful French-Spanish co-productions such as Andalousie/El sueño de Andalucía (1951), Violettes impériales/Violetas imperiales (1952) or Le chanteur de Mexico/El cantor de México (1956). This article analyses Luis Mariano's stardom from a transnational perspective. Although some French scholars have started to study it within the framework of French cinema, Luis Mariano s stardom worked in very different ways in Spain, as it implied and generated multiple tensions related to gender, queerness and national identity. Moreover, these tensions caused the introduction of changes in the films to adapt them to the Spanish audiences. Through the analysis of films, reviews, press articles, censorship documents and biographies, among other media texts, this article compares the results of the research on Luis Mariano in France with the investigation of his stardom in Spain, in order to evidence different relationships of the audiences of each country with the star and how he was read and received in diverse ways in each national context.


  • queer studies; homosexuality; national identity; gender; transnationality