Sunday, November 1, 2015

Is "Dia de los Muertos" too Americanized?

Deepa Fernandes, (SCPR, 10-27-15); Lalo Alcaraz; Wisdom Quarterly

Is Day of the Dead too Americanized?
Day of the "DED!" (Kelsey Fugere/LAW)
Prepping for Halloween? It's probably a good bet that some of you will have costumes that include colorfully painted skulls or dancing skeletons.
If you do, you should know those images originate from Dia De Los Muertos, the Mexican "Day of the Dead," a religious and cultural holiday of family [ancestor] remembrance, which begins on Sunday night (Nov. 1-2).
Dia de los Muertos-loving Latinas?
Each year there seems to more and more of this imagery around -- even mainstream craft stores like Michael's stock a vast array of products.  
But some people of Mexican ancestry are wondering, Has it gone too far? When does this embrace of the holiday become commercialized appropriation?

"La Cucaracha" (comic)

"La Cucaracha" (
GUEST: Lalo Alcaraz is a Chicano (Mexican-American) writer, satirist, cartoonist, and creator of "La Cucaracha" -- the first nationally-syndicated, politically themed Latino daily comic strip. He came into the KPCC radio studio to give the "Take Two" show his take on the new American craze of celebrating the traditionally Mexican Dia de los Muertos.

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Elaborately decorated skulls are crafted from sugar and given to friends as gifts. Colorful designs represent the vitality of life and individual personality (Karen Castillo Farfán/SCPR).

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