In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

  • Interview with Renata Morales Virgen / Una Entrevista con Renata Morales Virgen
  • Charles H. Rowell and Marcus Jones
  • Interview with Renata Morales Virgen
  • Charles H. Rowell and Marcus Jones

Click for larger view
View full resolution

Ivan Ortiz Morales
Mata Clara, Mexico

Photo by Marcus D. Jones © 2007

[End Page 126]

This interview took place on February 21, 2007, in Mata Clara, Veracruz, Mexico.

JONES: What is your name?

VIRGEN: My name is Renata Morales Virgen.

JONES: And where are you from?

VIRGEN: I'm from here—from Mata Clara.

JONES: Were you born here?

VIRGEN: I was born here in Mata Clara.

ROWELL: I have been told that you were a dancer.


ROWELL: Would you describe the dancing that you did?

VIRGEN: I like all kinds of music, but before, when I lived here, I would dance in the parades that made up carnivals. That's where I danced. There was tropical music, mambo, and salsa.

JONES: Can you describe the difference between salsa, tropical music, and mambo? What's the difference between the three types of dancing?

VIRGEN: Salsa is between couples who spin one another. Tropical music is danced the same, in couples, but they don't hold each other. And mambo's the same, between two people, but without holding each other.

JONES: What's the difference, in terms of the music, between these three types of dancing? [End Page 127]

VIRGEN: What's the difference?


VIRGEN: With mambo, one moves more. With salsa I would say that one moves a bit more. With salsa, there's spinning.

ROWELL: Was this dancing for the stage or just casual dancing with others?

VIRGEN: When we danced, it was part of a parade. When there were dances it was at weddings or fifteenth-birthday celebrations.

JONES: But was it done as a profession or just among friends?

VIRGEN: Among friends only.

JONES: And what do you do now?

VIRGEN: Now I live in Hidalgo. I have five children. In Hidalgo, they spin as they dance. That is to say, dancing is no longer how it was when I danced here.

JONES: Do you still dance?


JONES: Where is Hidalgo? Is it in the State of Veracruz?

VIRGEN: It's in Pachuca, around Mexico State.

ROWELL: So you do not live in Mata Clara?

VIRGEN: No, I don't live here now. I have been living in Hidalgo for seventeen years.

ROWELL: Why did you leave Mata Clara?

VIRGEN: Because I got married and I went to live in Hidalgo with my husband.

JONES: Your husband is from Hidalgo?


ROWELL: What's your profession, or are you a housewife in Hidalgo? [End Page 128]

VIRGEN: In Hidalgo I don't work. I am only a housewife.

ROWELL: Would you describe a typical day of yours, as a housewife?

VIRGEN: I get up and I send my children to school; I hurry to do the housework; I cook for when they come home; I do the laundry. That's what a housewife does. And my husband leaves early and doesn't return until nighttime.

ROWELL: Would that be the same as if you lived here in Mata Clara?


ROWELL: Hidalgo is not a large city, I gather.

VIRGEN: The place where I live is a town like this one. But it's in Apan, Hidalgo. Next to Apan is where I live, in a town.

JONES: Is it the same size as here or bigger?

VIRGEN: It's a bit smaller.

ROWELL: Is it Afro-mestizo or just mestizo?

VIRGEN: Most of the people who live there have fair skin, and they don't have hair like mine.

They have straight hair.

ROWELL: How do people respond to your hair, which is so very beautiful?

VIRGEN: In Hidalgo, because the majority has straight hair and mine is curly, they say that they like my hair, that they would like to have it like mine.

JONES: And your husband: what color is he?

VIRGEN: He's a bit lighter-skinned than I am, with straight hair.

ROWELL: Is he indigenous, or is he mestizo?

VIRGEN: Something like that.

ROWELL: And how old...


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 126-313
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.