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Mexico An in-depth guide to the country Manuela S., Ben E., Jhanzaib M.

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Presentation on theme: "Mexico An in-depth guide to the country Manuela S., Ben E., Jhanzaib M."— Presentation transcript:

1 Mexico An in-depth guide to the country Manuela S., Ben E., Jhanzaib M.

2 Bienvenidos a Nuestro Mexico Lindo y Querido … a country located south of the United States with moonlit fiestas, strolling mariachis, beautiful attractions, famous foods, and charming people.

3 Brief History of Mexico Mexico’s history traces back to early Mesoamerican and Mayan civilizations (300-900 A.D.) where temples, cultivation of crops, pottery, hieroglyph writing, calendar-making and mathematics, as well as art and architecture shaped the dominant lifestyle. In the early 1300’s the ancestors of the Aztec first settled on an island in Lake Texcoco. There, according to legend, the Aztec saw an eagle perched on a cactus with a snake in it’s mouth and took it as sign from God that they should settle there. This place was thus called Tenochtitlan, place of cactus. In 1492, when the Spaniards discovered the great city of Tenochtitlan, the Aztec Empire came to an end. After Cortes’ invasion and conquest, Mexico became a Spanish colony and remained under Spanish control for the next two hundred years. Mexican society was formed by a minority of pure native descendants, by “Mestizos” (people with mixed Native-Spanish blood), by Spanish immigrants who came to Mexico to accumulate wealth, and by a majority of “Creoles” (people with pure Spanish descent who were born in Mexico). Tired of the taxes imposed by the Spanish Crown, the Creoles initiated an insurrection that resulted in the proclamation of the Mexican Independence in 1821. Since then Mexico has been trading with many countries

4 General Trivia Mexico is actually part of North America. Capital: Mexico City Mexico is the 11 th richest country in the world; richest Latin American country. HDI: 0.756 GDP (per capita): $10,830 as of 2014; (total): $1,259 trillion as of 2014 Literacy Rate: As of 2012, the total literacy rate of adults in Mexico is 94.23% -Males: 95.39% -Females: 93.18% Though tequila is the national liquor, many Mexicans prefer to have cola or beer with their meals. Indigenous peoples living in Mexico makes less than the minimum wage, and therefore have many states below the poverty line. Some indigenous state conditions are so bad, that the mortality rate is actually double the population.

5 Music Through history, music has experienced great evolutions from the sound of beating drums played in the Aztec or Mayan ceremonies to the modern music of Mexican rap. The first thing that comes to mind when thinking of Mexican music however, is Mariachis. It is a type of musical group consisting of at least two violins, two trumpets, one Spanish guitar, one vihuela (a high-pitched, five-string guitar) and one guitarrón (a small-scaled acoustic bass), but sometimes including more than twenty musicians. Mariachi derived from the French word marriage being that it is often played in weddings. Today, it is also played in quinceañeras, birthdays, holidays and even at graveyards for those who past away.

6 Music…Rancheras Ranchera is a genre of traditional Mexican folk music and its songs are usually about love, patriotism or nature. The word ranchera is derived from the word rancho because the music originated on the ranches of rural Mexico. “El Grito Mexicano” is also very common which is a yell that is done by the musicians or the audience during the instrument playing. Some artists are: Vicente Fernandez Jenni Rivera Pepe Aguilar Ana Gabriel Jose Alfredo

7 Food Mexican food has been thought of to be very spicy. This is partially true. Mexico is known for giving chocolate to the world, as well as peanuts, vanilla, beans, coconuts, tomatoes and corn. Corn is the most common ingredient in Mexican foods. In fact, almost every meal is cooked with corn and used for quesadillas, tortillas, and other different meals as well as candy. Chili or salsa is another typical ingredient to flavor several meals whether it is pork, chicken, seafood or vegetables. Mexican food has been copied and reproduced throughout the world, especially the United States, inspiring big name fast food services, stores, and gourmet restaurants that incorporate Mexican food into many cultures.

8 Main Traditional Dishes Tamales- usually eaten during the winter holidays and are made of corn dough that contains a filling of your choice whether it is chicken, cheese or pork with a salsa. Dulce tamales is also another recipe choice where the corn dough is sweetened with cinnamon and then mixed with raisins and/or pineapple chunks. After preparing them, they then steamed for 90 minutes or so depending on how many are being cooked. Flautas- made of any filling (chicken, pork, cheese, potato) rolled up in a tortilla and fried in oil. Toppings are added as well such as sour cream, lettuce, cheese, beans, and salsa. Guacamole- very famous Mexican dip made of avocado, cilantro, onion, tomatoes, lemon juice, and a bit of salt. It is usually set as an appetizer with nachos or is added to many meals as well.

9 Beverages In every town in Mexico, one is always selling beverages from carts in the streets. Most common cold drinks are: - Horchata made with rice, almonds, cinnamon, and sugar - Licuados with various fruits mixed with milk or orange juice - Aguas Frescas containing fruit, sugar, and water - Champurrado hot beverage made of chocolate, cinnamon, water and milk. Usually given during the winter.

10 Candy Mexican candy is known for its authentic and unique mixture of flavors. Sweet & spicy is the most common flavor found among Mexican sweets. This makes it stand out from other candies; they consist of spicy & salty flavors, that don’t overwhelm or empower the overall taste of the candy. It also isn’t just candy but a piece of Mexican art. The “Calaveras de Azúcar”, or sugar skulls, are specially prepared for the Dia de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead.

11 Chocoflan Chocoflan is a Mexican dessert which combines flan and chocolate cake smothered in caramel. It is also referred to as pastel impossible or impossible cake. In Mexico, it is popular at parties, especially birthdays, and is also served in restaurants.

12 Language The people of Mexico speak mainly Spanish only ( about 92%) but there are other forms of Spanish that they speak. For example, there is Spanish and indigenous languages, being at 6%, indigenous only at 1% and un- specified at 1%. The dominant form of Spanish came from the country of Spain, when they colonized Mexico and brought their dialect into the society. Overall, Spanish comes from Latin roots, as does French and Italian.

13 Ethnicity There are few recorded cultures in Mexico. The main ethnicities are actually native ethnicities; those with ties to their origins before Spanish colonization. These ethnicities are: Mestizo (Amerindian-Spanish): 60% Amerindian/Predominantly Amerindian: 30% White: 9% Other:1%

14 Factors that affect population The many factors that brought these ethnicities here are known as centripetal and centrifugal forces. The causes of emigration from Mexico are: Poverty, with the rate being 52% Armed conflict; the drug cartels and homicides related to gang wars. Political strife: in 1929, the government was run by revolutionists and reformists and that caused trouble with the people.

15 The causes of immigration to Mexico are as follows: Job opportunities, due to the fact that Mexico is now the US’s second largest export market and its third largest import market. Growing industrial growth rate. Large labor force. Low un-employment rate; 4.9% and US has 7.9%

16 Religion There are a few religions that were taken and recorded by the CIA in Mexico. These religions are: Roman Catholic at 83% Pentecostal at 2% Jehovah’s Witnesses at 1% Other Evangelical churches at 5% Other at 2% None/Un-specified at 7%

17 Breakdown Each of the listed religions are universalizing, seeing as how there are many established places of worship in many countries. Roman Catholics believe that the Pope is directly chosen by God and therefore, the other Catholics follow the Bible and the Pope. Pentecostals believe that a person should be visibly changed when following the teachings of the Bible. This differs from other branches in that the baptism process in done in different languages and is broken into three main divisions.

18 Breakdown (Cont.) Jehovah’s witnesses believe that no one else was a divine in the Bible besides God, even denying the holy trinity and the fact that Jesus was a divine figure. Evangelicals believe that they should stress the authority of the Bible, and by doing so, Jesus will personally save you from Hell.

19 Environment The environment of Mexico has shaped its customs for over hundreds of years. The Incas and the Aztecs were known for their terrace farming and their cultural revolution around crops. This being praying for the rain to have a bountiful harvest or celebrating after a surplus of food has been harvested from the seasonal growing. Even now, the people of Mexico still farm and rely on this farmland to fuel their stomachs and their culture. This enhances the idea of possibilism, in which the people adapt to their physical environment.

20 Breakdown The advancement in technology and the colonization from Spain has greatly disturbed the peaceful indigenous peoples. When Spain has conquered Mexico, they used the tribal people as slaves to farm out natural resources like gold and zinc to use them for trade and jewelry. This had degraded the land greatly and left a lasting impact on their fertile land. In the modern era, companies have started digging for petroleum, gold, zinc, copper, and other valuable resources. This had ruined the fertile land and caused many farmers to flee from their regions to the US in order for work. The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico had taken a grim toll on the water ecosystem. Petroleum was spilled all over the gulf and is still not fully cleaned up today. Many fisherman were left jobless and the animals that swam in the gulf were poisoned, no longer making fishing any useful.

21 Popular vs. Folk Culture Popular culture is defined as a large scale change in the culture based on what happens around it. Folk culture is defined as homogenous traditions being practiced by a small number of people living in relative isolation. A popular culture in Mexico is lucha libre wrestling, where the wrestlers, called luchadores, fight in masks against the other antagonistic wrestler in a match. Another popular culture is actually mariachi music, even though it is considered folk culture. The music has spread so far and has gotten so much recognition that it cannot be considered a folk tradition.

22 Furthermore… A folk culture in Mexico is the use of home remedies to cure any ailments or illnesses. They would use the herbs around them to naturally cure the patient of the sickness. They also have a social hierarchy that is well-known throughout the people outside of the city. They set and follow this hierarchy unconsciously, expecting all members of their family to follow it. They also have this celebration called Carnival, in which they celebrate in a Mardi-Gras sort of festival before the Christian Lent. There is also Three King’s Day, where they celebrate the three wise-men that gave gifts to a newborn Jesus. They make bread and they put a little plastic Jesus inside each piece, and whoever gets the bread with the piece inside has to make tamales for everyone.

23 Tourist attractions One tourist attraction of Mexico is the Chichen Itza. This ancient Mayan temple is an artifact from the time before Spain had colonized Mexico. This ziggurat is a famously visited archaeological site, and has been named the new 7 th wonder of the world in 7/7/07. The ancient Mayas used to use this ziggurat to appease their gods through sacrifices and other rituals.

24 Another popular tourist attractions seen by many visitors is the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico. In 1960, the government had decided that they wanted to protect the history of the indigenous people that had once flourished throughout the country. They had created the museum, in which they could secure all of the ancient artifacts and preserve the culture, to share all of its history with the public.

25 Probably a more notable attraction is the state of Oaxaca in Mexico. Oaxaca is most known for its historic churches and its fiestas. The most notable fiesta that goes on in Oaxaca is Dia del los Muertos, in which they celebrate and commemorate the dead through parties. The people place offerings on the altars of their loved ones and they celebrate it by eating and having fiestas. Thuis state is also very indigenous and contains a lot of history only in the land.

26 Bibliography Brief History Retrieved from Traditional Mexican Music. (n.d.). Retrieved from tradition/traditional-mexican-music/ tradition/traditional-mexican-music/ Zimmermann, K. (2013, August 2). Mexican Culture: Customs & Traditions. Retrieved from Countries and Their Cultures. (n.d.). Retrieved from Ni/Mexico.html Ni/Mexico.html Mexican Pop Culture. (n.d.). Retrieved from Culture/d76-t11351 Culture/d76-t11351 Mexican Culture and Traditions. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.inside- Chichen Itza -- World Heritage Site -- National Geographic. (n.d.). Retrieved from Oaxaca. (n.d.). Retrieved from Museo Nacional de Antropología. (n.d.). Retrieved from

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