From Malinalli to Movimiento Regeneración Nacional

By: Robert Paul Moreira   Gary Mounce  

In The Other Mexico: Critique of the Pyramid, Nobel Prize Laureate Octavio Paz claims the myths and symbols of ancient Mexico deliberately--though not accurately--loom over all, dominating the entire Museo de Chapultepec. Paz employs this metaphor to reflect upon two important factors relevant to the Mexico he knew: first, the undeniability of the legacies of past traumas on these myths and symbols; second, on the pervasiveness of the ideology of dominance of the ruling party at the time, el Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI), which was revolutionary at first, then right of center for decades, until the most recent rise of the left-of-center politics of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and el Movimiento Regeneración Nacional (MORENA). One key mythical and symbolic figure of ancient Mexico is 'Malinalli’— also known as ‘Doña Marina,’ ‘La Malinche,’ or ‘La Chingada’: the slave woman who translated and ‘helped’ Hernan Cortes conquer the Aztecs between 1519-1521. With the central focus on Malinalli, this study examines other important historical traumas, myths, and symbols in historical texts, literature, scholarship, and drama, emphasizing their impact on the present-day state of democracy in Mexico, as well as US/Mexico relations. The authors and artists discussed in this presentation will include, but are not limited to, Bernardino de Sahagun, Octavio Paz, Enrique Krauze, Carmen Tafolla, Laura Esquivel, Gloria Anzaldua, and Robert Paul Moreira.

Politics Of Art, Arts And Identities, Arts And Diversities
2020 Special Focus - Against the Grain: Arts and the Crisis of Democracy
Paper Presentation in a Themed Session

Robert Paul Moreira

Lecturer III, Creative Writing, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

Dr. Gary Mounce

University of Texas-Pan American, Edinburg, Texas

Dr. Mounce teaches Latin American Politics at the University of Texas--Pan American, Edinburg, Texas. He has also taught at the Universidad de Salamanca, Spain, and La Universidad de las Americas, Puebla, Mexico. One of his most recent upper division courses was Arts and Culture in Latin America. He performs (character roles) with, and supports a ballet company in South Texas, helping to bring the joys of "Cascanueces," or the Nutcracker ballet to thousands of young Mexican American and Mexican children.