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Infant Betrothal in Tepoztlan?

There are two anthropological studies of Tepoztlan that I read, after arriving, three years, ago. One was by Robert Redfield, in 1930, followed by Oscar Lewis’ work in 1951. As a Social Anthropology major, I enjoyed reading these ethnographic works as examples of two pioneer social scientists building the discipline I had studied. However, it seems they barely scratched the surface of breaking the code on the cultural traditions that have been in place, here, for many generations to hundreds of years.

One ceremonial tradition I have observed that I have yet to find background on is what looks like infant betrothal. We have (twice) seen two men on horseback, one carrying a little boy, and the other a little girl. Each child is wearing what would appear to a wedding attire. They are followed by about 25 cars following in a configuration that looks like a matrimonial procession, complete with cheering and horn honking in a pattern that seems to be unique to this event. I suspect that this event is purely informal reflecting a commitment of friendship among families. The movie “Like Water For Chocolate,” is set during the Mexican Revolution in the early 20th Century, and includes reference to an arranged marriage. But I have not found any contemporary reference to arranged marriage in Mexico. I believe there are many cultural traditions yet to be studied and documented, here in Tepoztlan. I have heard that there is an anthropologist working on this, at this time, and I will have to see if I can find this individual to learn more.


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