In Petra R. Rivera-Rideau’s article, Enter the Hurbans, the background of Reggaeton and its rise in US culture are discussed. In the article, Rivera-Rideau makes the clear distinction between the Reggaeton that is known throughout Latin America and what Reggaeton has been adapted into in the US: a racial controversy promoting stereotypes, the success of lighter-skinned artists, and the appropriation of cultures for the purpose of entertaining US residents. Additionally, the media in the US hypersexualizes reggaeton portraying this as the norm throughout Latin America.
Given that the roots of the genre stem from primarily Afro-Puerto Rican ghettos, it is expected that the genre would be compared to hip-hop because of its roots in lower-class, African-American neighborhoods. As far as race, class and gender affecting how reggaeton changes in the future, I believe minor changes will result from these issues in Latin America. However, in the US, the future of the genre will be almost entirely shaped by money and race, just the same as rap music. Although reggaeton artists in Latin America are mostly men, I believe the rise of reggaeton in the US will bring opportunities to many artists, male and female.
The few reggaeton hits that were popular in the US resulted in hundreds of millions of plays and dollars of revenue. Given this history, anyone in the music industry in the US who has had interest in reggaeton in the past is now likely trying to make the next “Despacito.” This money-fueled attack on traditional reggaeton could result in the formation of a new genre, or even the US’s takeover of the genre worldwide. While reggaeton stands in its current state as hope for US culture to adapt a new genre into its mainstream music scene, the destruction of its latin influence could prove to be quite damaging to reggaeton artists, as their money and genre is stolen for good business.