Analysis of a Mexican Cultural Expression (painting, sculpture, literary text, play, popular religious expression, etc.) THE MEXICAN MURALIST
MOVEMENT IS THE CULTURAL EXPRESSION THAT NEEDS TO BE WRITTEN ABOUT
Your task is to explain how the chosen cultural expression (artwork, text, etc.) exemplifies or modifies or rejects (etc.) one of the key
cultural phenomena that we have discussed in course readings or discussions. MEXICANIDAD is the cultural phenomena I would like to use.
So essentially how the MEXICAN MURALIST MOVEMENT exemplifies, modifies or rejects the MEXICANIDAD cultural pheomena of Mexico.
The Mexican Muralist Movement was goverment backed artwork to tell history and get the Mexican people on their side.
Potential information PRI/Partido Revolucionario Institucional and how they felt/played into both the Mexican Muralist Movement and Mexicandad
Potentially talking about the work and lives of muralist Diego Rivera, José Clemente Orozco, and David Alfaro Siqueiros
Humanities 3321: Hispanic Culture and Civilization
Composition 2 Analysis of a Mexican Cultural Expression
Write 3-5 pages on the topic explained below. All compositions should be the work of the student. You should consult other students or the
professor regarding spelling, vocabulary and grammatical questions, and about organization of your ideas. You should summarize and include the
ideas of published sources in the framework of your own analysis of the structure. However, plagiarism is strictly forbidden and will be
reported to the proper university authorities. Compositions must be typed and double-spaced using Times New Roman, 12, and standard (1.25”)
margins. Be sure to organize your composition in essay form, including an introduction with thesis statement(s), paragraphs to develop your
idea in the body of the paper, and a concluding paragraph. You should cite at least three different published sources to support your ideas.
Internet sources do not count for this requirement, but do note them appropriately if you use material from credible websites (use caution and
good sense when citing from the Internet). When citing ideas or passages from Fuentes’s The Buried Mirror or other sources, introduce the
paraphrase or quotation appropriately and indicate source and page number immediately after the quotation or paraphrase in the following manner:
[Example of a paraphrase]: Hill explains that the many of the non-Muslim Peoples of the Book converted to Islam, probably to avoid paying
religious taxes. (Hill 29)
[example of a direct quotation] As Fuentes points out in The Buried Mirror, “the matador is a tragic representation of man’s relation to
nature.” (Fuentes 23)
[another paraphrase:] Although there is some debate about the exact date of the Iberians’ first appearance in the peninsula, virtually everyone
agrees that it took place long before the arrival of the Phoenicians. (Cultural Atlas 75)
Include complete bibliographical information in a short list of ‘Works Cited’ at the end of the paper (author, title, publisher, place and date
of publication, as well as page numbers of chapters or articles in journals or collections: see UHD library cite on ‘Writing and Citing’ for
more information, http://www.uhd.edu/library/guides/citingwriting.html).
Topic: Analysis of a Mexican Cultural Expression (painting, sculpture, literary text, play, popular religious expression, etc.)
You may choose any Mexican cultural expression that we have discussed in class or that has been mentioned in course readings. Your task is to
explain how the chosen cultural expression (artwork, text, etc.) exemplifies or modifies or rejects (etc.) one of the key cultural phenomena
that we have discussed in course readings or discussions. To find an appropriate cultural phenomenon to explore through your chosen cultural
expression, review the unit vocabulary lists from the period in which your cultural expression was created. For example, if you choose to talk
about the ancient Mesoamerican legacy in Mexican Hispanic culture (something like the pyramids of Teotihuacan, or the statue of Chac Mool from
the Toltec-Maya culture, you could focus on the importance of blood/human sacrifice to pre-Columbian Mesoamerican culture, or their theocratic
and hierarchical nature (etc.): try to choose a phenomenon that has lasting impact on the development of Hispanic culture in Mexico.
Other possible cultural phenomena you can use to analyze would include popular religion, cultural resistance (or cultural assimilation) during
the Hispanization of Mexico, the Hispanization of Mexico, the development of Mexicanidad (during the colonial period, after Independence, during
the Mexican Revolution and after, etc.), the colonial caste system before and after Independence, revolutionary culture, social Darwinism or
positivism, Indigenism, the Mestizo nation of the PRI, Magical Realism, etc.
Format: In addition to the requirements mentioned above about font and margins, be sure to include the following standard practices in good
• Introduction with thesis statement in the first paragraph: you should indicate which cultural phenomenon you are using to explain the
cultural content and context of the artwork, literary text, or other cultural expression. You should include a clear definition of the cultural
phenomenon that you are using to analyze the work in the first or second paragraph of the paper. By identifying its basic traits, you can
organize the rest of your paper by showing how those traits appear in the work you are analyzing.
• Materials and argument are organized in logical paragraphs (usually no more than six to eight sentences long and no less than three);
organize your thoughts logically!
• All cited materials are properly sourced with sufficient bibliographical information in MLA format (see notes above and consult the link
called ‘Citing & Writing” on the UHD website for more about MLA style : http://www.uhd.edu/library/guides/citingwriting.html )
• An appropriate conclusion that follows from the evidence and arguments presented in the body of the paper; it is recommended that you
relate your analysis to the main cultural process of cultural syncretism that has produced so much of modern Mexican cultural identity (if
• An appropriate title that identifies the cultural phenomenon and the cultural expression (artwork, literary text, etc.) you have
analyzed. A good title is like a brief summary of your thesis. Some examples: Cultural Assimilation in Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz’s First
Dream; Cultural Resistance to Hispanization in Mexican Santeria; Elite Creole Culture and Velasco’s Landscape Painting (etc.)
Some other items to consider including in your analysis (bolded items highly recommended):
• Place of origin, historical period of creation, name of the creator (if applicable) of the cultural object/ expression that you are
• Stylistic traits, details about the work’s content, form, use, etc.
• Brief cultural-historical overview that explains the context of this work
• Vocabulary from our units should be used as appropriate to refer to different phenomena or details in your cultural expression
• Concluding explanation of how this particular phenomenon reveals the syncretic nature of Mexican culture, with both Indigenous and
Hispanic elements blended into something new