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The death ritual differences between mexican and american culture

Cultura mexicana sometimes referred to as mexicanidad Orientation Identification. The word "Mexico" is derived from Mexica pronounced "Me-shee-ka"the name for the indigenous group that settled in central Mexico in the early fourteenth century and is best known as the Aztecs.

Mexicans make several cultural subdivisions within the nation. The most common one identifies northern, central, and south or south-eastern Mexico. The extensive and desertlike north was only sparsely populated until the middle of the twentieth century, except for some important cities such as Monterrey.

It has traditionally housed only small indigenous populations and is generally regarded as a frontier culture. Densely populated central and western Mexico is the cradle of the nation. Highly developed Indian cultures populated this region in pre-Columbian times and it was also the heart of the colony of New Spain. Southern Mexico has a tropical or subtropical climate and some rain forest. It is characterized by a strong indigenous heritage and is also the poorest part of the country.

Another relevant cultural division is that between the central template highlands the altiplano and the much more humid mountainous regions the sierras and coastal plains.

Hispanic Culture and Family

In many parts of Mexico this division parallels the relative presence of indigenous populations, with the sierra regions being the most indigenous. On a smaller scale the Mexican nation has traditionally been characterized by strong provincial and local cultural identities.

People identify closely with their own state; stereotypes about people from other places abound. Strong regional and local identities have given rise to the idea that there exist "many Mexicos.

  • Identidad y metamorfosis del mexicano, 1987;
  • All major highways in Mexico converge in the capital city;
  • It took the French a year to bring reinforcements and take the Mexican capital in 1863.

Mexico is situated in North America, although culturally, it is identified more closely with Central and South American countries. The national territory measures more than 750,000 square miles nearly two million square kilometers and contains a wide range of physical environments and natural resources. East and west of the mountain chains are strips of humid coastal plains. The possibilities and limitations of this topographic and climatic system have had a strong influence on Mexico's social, economic, and cultural organization.

The national capital is Mexico City, situated in the heart of central Mexico. In pre-Columbian times it was the site of the capital of the Aztec Empire and during the three centuries of colonial rule it was the seat of the viceroys of New Spain. Mexico City today is the second largest city in the world with 17 million inhabitants as of 1995. Most administrative and economic activities are concentrated in Mexico City.

Other major cities are Guadalajara in the west and the industrial city of Monterrey in the north. The preliminary results of the 2000 population census calculated the total number of Mexicans as 97,361,711.

In 1950, the total population amounted to approximately 25 million, with the figure reaching nearly 50 million in 1970. These numbers demonstrate the rapid rate of demographic growth that was so characteristic of Mexico during the second half of the twentieth century. The growth rate has slowed, but the population is still very young.

The average life expectancy in 1999 was estimated at sixty-nine years for men and a little over seventy-five years for women; the infant mortality rate was almost twenty-five per one thousand.

In the late twentieth century, emigration to the United States mainly of the illegal variety became a significant phenomenon. Mexico's population still contains many Indian groups. Depending on the definition used, the total number of Indians varied from 6. Spoken by more than 95 percent of the population, Spanish is the official language of Mexico and was introduced through conquest and colonization. Mexican Spanish has its roots in the Spanish of Spain. In terms of grammar, syntax, and spelling there are no important differences between the two, but the pronunciation and sound are different.

Certain words from the principal Indian language Nahuatl are incorporated the death ritual differences between mexican and american culture Mexican Spanish, especially in the domains of food and household. Some of these words have also been incorporated into other languages such as the English 'chocolate' from the Nahuatl 'chocolatl'. The national culture of Mexico boasts sixty-two indigenous languages. In 1995 at least 5. The level of bilinguism, however, was high at 85 percent. The most prominent symbols that express and reinforce national culture belong to the domains of state, religion, and popular culture.

As a product of the Mexican Revolution 1910—1917the Mexican state has been an important point of convergence for national identity.

Because it was a widely shared process that profoundly refashioned the country's social, political, economic, and cultural characteristics, the revolution itself has become an important source of national identity. The postrevolutionary state has been very active and effective in nurturing national symbols and heroes. Children who attend public schools honor the national flag and sing the national anthem every Monday morning.

The flag consists of three vertical strips in the colors green representing "hope"white "purity" and red "blood". In the central white strip is the image of an eagle standing on a cactus plant and eating a snake. The most important icon of Mexican national culture is the Virgin of Guadalupe, which illustrates the pervasive influence of Roman Catholicism in the national culture. She is viewed as the "mother" of all Mexicans. The dark-skinned Virgin is the Mexican version of the Virgin Mary and as such represents national identity as the product of the mixing of European and Meso-American religions and peoples.

Her image was used in the struggle for independence against the Spanish. This sense is also expressed in numerous elements of popular culture such as food and music. History and Ethnic Relations Emergence of the Nation. Mexican national culture slowly emerged from a process of accommodation between the indigenous cultures and the Spanish colonial domination that lasted three centuries.

Mexico gained independence in 1821.

Death and dying: How different cultures view the end

In the nineteenth century, the formation of the national culture and polity remained a difficult task mainly due to political instability, military uprisings, and foreign invasions. In these years Mexico lost large portions of its original territory.

  • Her image was used in the struggle for independence against the Spanish;
  • Certain words from the principal Indian language Nahuatl are incorporated into Mexican Spanish, especially in the domains of food and household;
  • The war ended with U;
  • Mexicans like to paint their houses in vivid colors;
  • Because of its particular origins, its longevity in power, and the influence of diverse interest groups, the PRI is difficult to classify ideologically.

Most important in this respect was the war with the United States between 1846 and 1848, which broke out when the United States attempted to annex independent Texas. The war ended with U.

Despite this tragic loss, the war did contribute to the development of a genuine nationalism for the first time. In 1853, in a contradictory decision, the Mexican government sold present-day southern New Mexico and Arizona to the United States in order to solve budgetary problems.

Hispanic Culture of Death and Dying

The relationship between Mexico and the United States has remained difficult and ambivalent ever since. Mexico was invaded again in 1862, this time by the French, who installed a monarchy in coalition with conservative Mexican elites. Civil war ensued until the French were defeated by Mexican liberals in 1867, which inaugurated a new republic that was finally becoming a nation-state. These were years of nascent economic, infrastructural, and political modernization.

These processes fostered the political, economic, and social integration of different groups and regions within the nation and strengthened state and nation building. These profound transformations, however, also created many tensions and conflicts between rich and poor, peasants and large landowners, Indians and non-Indians, and the politically influential and the aspiring middle classes.

It is estimated that 1 million people were killed during the revolutionary period of a total population of a little more than 15 million in 1910. Armed struggle formally ended with the adoption of a new Constitution in early 1917, but it still took several decades more before a new nation-state consolidated.

Postrevolutionary reconstruction affected all domains of society and gave an entirely new meaning to the nation. The development of Mexican national identity has occurred through distinctive positioning in the international arena and through internal strides towards unity and homogeneity. Mexico's history of complicated relationships with colonial or imperial powers explains its current drive toward a proud and self-conscious identity.

Especially after World War II, the nation sought ways to project itself onto the international scene. For example, Mexico hosted major world sporting events on three occasions: The dominant religion in Mexico is Roman Catholicism. The development of Mexican national identity has also focused on Mexico's distinctive relationship to the United States. Mexicans resent this situation but at the same time admire the achievements of their northern neighbors.

Internally, the forging of a national identity always revolved around the issue of race.

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The adoption of liberalism in the nineteenth century implied that all racial groups in Mexico were made legally equal in the framework of the incipient nation-state, although not in social practice. The dominant ideology actively sought to eliminate racial heterogeneity. It was believed that only a racially homogeneous population could develop a national identity, which led to the promotion of racial mixing, or mestizaje. After the revolution, the emphasis shifted from racial to cultural differences.

The value ascribed to Mexico's indigenous peoples also changed. The grandeur of pre-Columbian Indian culture was incorporated into the national imagery. At the same time, the ideas and policies that stressed cultural uniformity and homogeneity persisted. In the ideology of the revolution, the opposition between Indian and European had given rise to a synthesis, the mestizowho was considered the authentic Mexican.

In the middle of the twentieth century, the elaboration of the national identity increasingly concentrated on the supposed psychological character of the quintessential Mexican mestizo. This gave rise to the mythology of mexicanidador "the essence of being Mexican. Although the absolute majority of the population is mestizo, there is a renewed attention to and appreciation of cultural differences and diversity.

  • Muggings and burglaries, increasingly violent, became widespread;
  • There are no unemployment benefits;
  • They are expected to be strong and keep their emotions in check.

The rethinking of the role and meaning of indigenous peoples has given rise to the notion of a pluricultural national identity. Social policies aimed at the emancipation of Indian groups and the elimination of profound socioeconomic inequalities have been employed since the 1930s.

Nevertheless, indigenous populations are among the poorest and most marginalized groups in Mexico. Prejudice among broad sectors of the population toward Indians persists. Elites in provincial towns in predominantly indigenous regions are often openly racist. This situation has strained ethnic relations and there has been a rise of indigenous movements in recent years that demand a new space in the national culture.

Most significant has been the outbreak of armed indigenous rebellion in the state of Chiapas, where the Zapatista Army for National Liberation declared war on the government in January 1994. In recent decades, Mexican cities have grown at a pace surpassing the capacities of urban planning. Urban growth has been accompanied by squatter settlements and uncontrolled commercial and industrial expansion.

This growth has also consumed extreme amounts of space, because low-rise buildings prevail and because priority is given to new and prestigious projects in the outskirts as opposed to urban renewal.