the calaveras, These brightly colored skulls have been appearing in American stores for several days and their photos show Katerina Social networks flood. Day of the DeadDia de los Muertos, The animated film “Coco” from Pixar Studios is revered, not on one day like the Catholic Day of the Dead, but on at least two days, the first and second of November. It is a cultural event that cannot be missed in Mexico but also in the United States where more than 19% of the population is of Hispanic origin. What exactly are we celebrating? That’s the stupid question of the week.
A celebration listed by UNESCO
the Dia de los Muertos It is an ancient Mexican festival whose origins go back to the Aztec civilization, and its modern interpretation is a mixture of pre-Hispanic rituals and Christian festivals. “Day of the Dead is a great example of Mexicans’ ability to take the best of the cultures that make up their country and turn them into something uniquely their own. points out Leah Ramsdell, who has studied Latin American culture for many years and teaches Spanish and Portuguese at Towson University.
Since 2008, the festival has been included on the UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. she It pays tribute to the deceased by inviting them to reintegrate into the human world for a few days (October 31 may be added to the November 1 and 2 celebrations) in an atmosphere that is as festive as it is joyful. If customs differ according to the regions in which they are practiced, the symbols are common.
The focus of the party is AltarIt is an altar on which family members of the deceased place candles and marigold flowers to show him the path that will lead him to them. Pictures and his favorite food are added to it, in addition to skull-shaped jewelry and decorations. . These altars are not intended for worship, but rather for receiving souls returning among the living. ” There is something very solemn about the Ofrenda ritual that one holds at home to appease one’s ancestors, and then visits a cemetery that suddenly turns into the liveliest place in town. Leah Ramsdell explains.
Another unmissable aspect of Day of the Dead is the locals dressed in costumes marching to the beat of upbeat music. ” The parade through the city streets has a carnival atmosphere, offering everyone the opportunity to change their appearance and perpetuate the parody tradition of calavera.” The teacher determines. to At the time, the term, meaning skull, was also used to refer to satirical poems published in the media, a widespread practice that Mexican political cartoonist José Guadalupe Posada took one step further in the early twentieth century by depicting his protagonists as a form of… Corpse shapes. . ” We are all skeletons “, a quote often attributed to Posada, is meant to remind that human beings in all their manifestations are alike and destined to the same fate.
” In its modern form, Dia de Los Muertos is a way to pay tribute to the battles fought by ancestors to preserve their culture, but also to celebrate Mexican heritage. » Adds Leah Ramsdell, who also sees “ A way for Mexicans in the United States to foster a sense of belonging. »