La Guelaguetza: Oaxacan Migrant Festivals and the Making of Transborder Indigeneity

Xóchitl C. Chávez (University of California, Riverside)

For Oaxacan migrants, leaving the beloved land that gave birth to them was only part of the journey. Moving into a new country with different values and customs, migrants replanted their Oaxacan ways of knowing through the Indigenous practice of the guelaguetza (mutual assistance) in their new places of settlement. Their intense networking throughout Greater Oaxaca led to the production of migrant Guelaguetza festivals, which became an important site where Oaxacan community members could create, renew, and maintain connections with paisanos through dance and music. Expressing their cultural practices helped build solidarity and preserved a powerful and long-standing collective memory across borders.

Part of 04-05 Roots and Routes: Political and Cultural Borders in Latin American Music-Making, Friday, November 03, 8:30 am–10:00 am