Hijos de la Chingada

Tráiler La Usurpadora 2019

A grandiose Mexican soap opera, La Usurpadora, continues apace. This is not just an ordinary soap opera. It takes the genre to a level few could have envisaged. The production is on a stupendous scale. “Spare no expense,” ordered the producers. And this is how Octavio Paz says the Mexicans tend to do things. In one village, Paz asked the mayor, “What is the yearly income for your town government?” The mayor admitted they were very poor, with annual revenue about 3,000 pesos. “And how do you spend that 3,000 pesos?” Paz further inquired. “Mostly on fiestas, señor,” replied the mayor. [1]

Perhaps you have seen them, riding bicycles to and fro, in your town: transplanted Mexicans, neither Mexican nor American, they “float in the air”, never mixing or uniting with the North American world. [2] Perhaps you have wondered about the strange land from whence they come, as did Octavio Paz. Seeking understanding, Ersjdamoo dared the language barrier and began watching La Usurpadora. The Mexican First Lady feels trapped by duties of state. She lures an idealistic Colombian woman who looks exactly like her to Mexico. A switch takes place and the Colombian woman becomes the usurpadora (usurper). From this, mathematical plot complexities multiply until at last your mouth gapes and you cry, “¡Ay, caramba!

In 1810, Padre Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla gave a shout of rebellion, and ever since, on each September 15th, there is a fiesta called Grito (shout) which commemorates that event. At the Grito fiesta, everyone shouts, “¡Viva México, hijos de la chingada!” (That word – chingada – is ordinarily forbidden, like “the F word” and “the N word” here in the United States.) Octavio Paz, seeking clues to Mexico’s identity, explores the root, chingar, and finds various meanings. One meaning found is “the violated Mother”, raped by the Spanish Conquistadores. The symbol of the violation is Doña Malinche, a native woman who became the mistress of Hernán Cortés. The “Mexican people have not forgiven La Malinche for her betrayal.” [1]

Another fiesta they have down there is La Llorona (The Weeping Woman), on May 10th. In pre-Conquest times, she was the earth-goddess Cihuacóatl. Now she wanders the streets of Mexico late at night, weeping and crying out, many Mexicans still believe. [1]

The Spaniards and others who have “violated” Mother Mexico are all of them machos, chingones, hence the Grito each September 15th: “¡Viva México, hijos de la chingada!” This shout, says Octavio Paz, signifies a deeply-held wish “to live closed off from the outside world and, above all, from the past.” Perhaps that is why the transplanted Mexicans here in the U.S. “float” – i.e., they are both here and not here simultaneously. [1]

——- Sources ——-
[1] The Labyrinth of Solitude (and Other Writings), by Octavio Paz. New York: Grove Press, 1985.
[2] “Usurpadora Provides Escape”, Ersjdamoo’s Blog, January 2, 2021. https://ersjdamoo.wordpress.com/2021/01/02/usurpadora-provides-escape/

 

About ersjdamoo

Editor of Conspiracy Nation, later renamed Melchizedek Communique. Close associate of the late Sherman H. Skolnick. Jack of all trades, master of none. Sagittarius, with Sagittarius rising. I'm not a bum, I'm a philosopher.
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