Print version ISSN 0185-1659
SAUMADE, Frédéric. ¿Pueden los indios modernos convertir al hombre blanco? Fiesta patronal y rodeo entre los huicholes del occidente mexicano. Cuicuilco [online]. 2010, vol.17, n.48, pp. 229-256. ISSN 0185-1659.
Among the Huichol Indians (wixarika) from northwestern Mexico, contemporary ethnography shows that the hispanic ox, staple of the regional economy, has become a sacred animal whose ritual sacrifice is closely related to plant and animal species that were already venerated during the pre-Hispanic era: the deer, corn and the peyote, a hallucinogenic cactus that causes shamanic visions. In this paper, based upon first hand ethnography, the author extends the analysis by studying a non-sacrificial and festive context where the recreational use of the Hispanic animal appears in a series of activities that all result from the interaction of the indigenous society with Western civilization whose mestizo neighbours are the closest representatives. By the way, he demonstrates that, far from corrupting the authenticity of the wixarika universe, the acculturation elements -the cattle, the cult of the Catholic saints, the Western model of festive leisure, the monetary economy- reactivate a deep structure of indigenous thought: the tendency to research and set apart the elements of exteriority and otherness to justify an eschatological representation of the cosmos.
Keywords : Huichols; cattle; festival; Indian culture; Western culture.