Date of Award

Spring 5-13-2016

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Degree Program

History

Department

History

Major Professor

Dr. Connie Atkinson

Second Advisor

Dr. Mary Niall Mitchell

Third Advisor

Dr. Charles Chamberlain

Abstract

In South Louisiana in the late 1950s, Ville Platte native Floyd Soileau joined a network of independent recording companies across the United States that provided an opportunity for local entrepreneurs and artists to profit from the global music industry. This paper analyzes the album covers of Floyd Soileau’s Cajun recording label, Swallow Records, during the 1960s-1970s. This period overlaps with a movement to subvert a negative regional identity among Louisiana Cajuns that is often referred to as the Cajun revival. Through a consideration of album covers as objects of business strategy and creative expression, as well as oral histories with individuals who worked with Swallow Records, this paper argues that Floyd Soileau shaped the perception of Cajun music and people through the channels of the global music industry. On the album covers of Swallow Records, Floyd Soileau marketed a Cajun identity that was rural, white, masculine, and French-speaking, and became an accidental facilitator of the social and political goals of leaders in the Cajun revival.

Rights

The University of New Orleans and its agents retain the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible this dissertation or thesis in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. The author retains all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis or dissertation.

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