By Andrew Canessa
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Additional info for Intimate Indigeneities: Race, Sex, and History in the Small Spaces of Andean Life
They remember well how the mestizos would not sit with them, would not eat with them, and would not offer them maize beer in a glass—which is what they used—but in a tutuma—a gourd. They are also all very aware of how the Mamani family suffered at the hands of the Villa Esquiveleños. Mateo Mamani, although from Wila Kjarka, worked for a man in Villa Esquivel, Juan Botello. ” The mestizos did not work the land, however, and paid indians to do it for them. I met Mateo’s son, Pastor, at his uncle’s funeral, shortly after arriving in Wila Kjarka.
This form of address, “mother” and “father,” with the prolonged final vowel that indicates subservience, was hated by indians, who found it patronizing and humiliating but felt required to address creoles in this way. A number of older people in Wila Kjarka mentioned this to me specifically as one of the things they disliked most about this period. But for Clara these were simply terms of respect, and before the Agrarian Reform of 1953, the campesinos “knew their place” and “were very respectful.
After all, labor, commensality, language, and ritual are the key distinguishing features that separate jaqi (indians) from q’ara (nonindians), but, as we shall see, they are by no means the only ones. Gender is a theme that runs through this book and, at the risk of stating the obvious, my identity as a man has affected the kinds of data I collected, but it most certainly did not reduce my observations to an exclusively male perspective. In my first months and years of research I spoke mostly to young men who spoke at least some Spanish, but in subsequent years all my conversations have been in Aymara, and this has allowed me to have long discussions with women of all ages as well as men.