Popular narratives ambiguously recognize the presence of Black women in Mexico. While registering the existence of Afro-descendants on the American Continent, Mexicans simultaneously deny the genetic, cultural, and economic contributions of Black women, subduing their voices. The refusal to incorporate the perspective of African and Afro-Mestiza women into popular and academic narratives has consequently resulted in a distorted view of Afro-Mexican populations and of the elements that compose Mexican national identities. If Francisco Rojas Gonzalez's novel La negra Angustias tells the story of a complex protagonist, countering stereotypes of Black womanhood, most other popular representations cancel the multidimensional subjectivities of women of African descent in Mexico. This article discusses La negra Angustias and other images of women of African descent in twentieth-century Mexican popular culture. Film, music, and literature productions are discussed through the analysis of rumbera films, Gabilondo Soler's lyrics, and Café Tacuba's performance of "Rarotonga," originally a comic character. The study of these images supports the idea that Mexican popular culture has adopted globalized forms of racism and sexism, strengthening an already-exclusive whitened national identity. Although there is no uniform adoption of racist and sexist approximations in Mexico to Black women representations, the persistence of Eurocentric models is potentiated by the rapid and wide coverage of hegemonic ideas through globalization projects.


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pp. 108-127
Launched on MUSE
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