Geography Reference
In-Depth Information
tricately linked in a life. This kind of microspace, to Joseph, becomes an imagining in-
separable from society's realities. Thus, Jackie, as a societally formed subject, desires
a vibrant and sustaining cultural life that the club could help provide. The economic
proudofmyselfandthisclub…thestuffitprovidesmeandmycustomers,” shesaysto
me. “This club is me … and it's my baby,” she adds. This is the side to her that wants to
resist the commercial creep into her club. Commercialization, in this trace, should only
go so far, the club's integrity could be lost forever. This, like a chill, seems to tug at her,
entering her thoughts at a moment's notice. In this parallel track of thinking, one vision
of club success—large crowds relishing the music, throngs of people enjoying them-
selves at the bar, happy social relations resonating across the club—are moments when
personal possibility and potentiality are at their brightest.
Not surprisingly, then, Jackie continually etches hope across the club's vastness: in
faces, bodies, musical instruments, social relations, frayed pictures and posters on the
wall. People are engaged and understood this way: musicians, club owners, waitresses,
ing fine when we're in Beebe's,” Jackie says to me, “it may be different out there [wav-
ing outside the club], but it's all good when we're assembled [here].” Positive meanings
(nostalgic remembrances, current social recollections) are continuously infused in the
sociospatial fabric of a place's objects (the bar, the stage, the bands, pictures draped on
the stage). Jackie, for example, identifies the stage as “a place of history … where some
of the best musicians in Chicago have stepped foot on [sic] and blown the place away.
It's a historical treasure.” A space of identity nourishment and social contentment will
Beebe's becomes a space of elaborate constructing and choreographing attuned and re-
fined to a person's social desires.
In this vein, Jackie desires to have a club that upholds her notion of “a black blues
tradition.” “I've always loved the blues,” she tells me, “as a little girl this is what my
father would listen to, this is what I listened to … it [the blues] was in my psyche at
an early age.” Race and class interconnect in Jackie's conception of “black blues.” It, to
Jackie, was borne out of black people's struggles for dignity and decent lives. This mu-
sic is seemingly reflective of a people's age-old tussle to transplant, adapt, socially and
identifying a legacy of slavery and racism, oppressive gendering, coping with ghettoiz-
ation and racism, struggles to keep a sense of positive racial affiliation intact, and the
Jackie tells me, “is a history! We've face a bitter history to survive … we were official
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