By Pilar Melero
Mexican figures like l. a. Virgen de Guadalupe, l. a. Malinche, l. a. Llorona, and los angeles Chingada mirror various myths of motherhood in Mexican tradition. For the 1st time, Melero examines those situations of portrayed motherhood as a discursive area within the political, cultural, and literary context of early 20th century Mexico.
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Additional resources for Mythological Constructs of Mexican Femininity
The Virgin of Guadalupe, a myth formulated in colonial Mexico, embodies the virtues of the ideal mother as defined by dominant models, as Castellanos explains: She is, despite her apparent fragility, the sustainer of life, the one who protects against danger, the one who shelters [one] from pain, the one who presides over celebrations, the one who legitimates happiness, the one who saves the body from illness, and the soul from the temptations of the devil. How are we to not love her, revere her, how not to turn her into the most loved center of our affective life?
Finally, Chapter 4 examines the work of Andrea Villarreal González, another Mexican activist and journalist. 0003 Introduction “The Mexican Joan of Arc,” worked alongside the Magón brothers on behalf of the Mexican Revolution. She also worked with Mother Jones to promote labor rights in the United States. While her positions on labor and civil rights of men and women were highly progressive, Villarreal González, like the rest of the women in this book, also composed her discourse from the space of motherhood, (re)articulating motherhood as a space for political expression.
She reconfigures femininity by expanding it to include the role of historian, a role denied to women. In her gender/genre reversal, she casts letrados (the usual historians) as the keepers of myth. Campobello (re)writes femininity outside domesticity and into the public domain—the historical text— but she does so from the very core of patriarchy: motherhood. Chapter 2 examines the journalistic, poetic, and epistolary works of Juana Belén Gutiérrez de Mendoza. A political activist and journalist, Gutiérrez de Mendoza advocates for the rights of marginalized peoples—mainly the indigenous population and those from the lower social strata who she believes will benefit most from the Revolution.
Mythological Constructs of Mexican Femininity by Pilar Melero