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Published: 14-12-2019

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A Marxist Reading of Y Tu Mama Tambien

In the film Y Tu Mama Tambien, the characters Tenoch, Julio and Luisa represent Mexican financial classes and social stratification in distinct ways. A Marxist would argue that Tenoch, the much more affluent male lead of the trio, represents a bourgeois who has been shaped by the customs and expectations of his class, although he is in denial of it. He dreams of getting a writer, idealizing this as a person who thinks and speaks freely, and is not tied down to the constraints of finances. This is the opposite of an economist, which is what his father, a prominent statesman, expects of him. He befriends men and women like Saba and Julio, tying himself to the “lower classes” and justifying, in his personal thoughts, his dissociation with the mores of his class. A Marxist would probably argue that Tenoch is possessing an existential conflict with his personal class, as the stress on him to be prosperous and profitable are not in line with his private aspirations. On the other hand, possibly it is due to the fact of his class and prosperity that he feels no concern for cash he requires for granted what he has in abundance because someone else, and not he, had to labour for it. His search for “freedom” and his solidarity with folks of a decrease echelon manifest themselves in his liberal sexuality, drug use and the Kerouac-esque road trip he requires with his friend Julio and their new female companion, Luisa.

Julio, on the other hand, is reduced on the scale than Tenoch. His lack of wealth and a lot seem to give him with a want to stick to academics, as he reveals to his friend although they’re on a drive. Coincidentally, whilst Tenoch would like to escape from the confines of his status to grow to be a writer, Julio is operating difficult at becoming an economist in order to attain a level of prosperity Tenoch requires for granted. Maybe a tiny more than midway through the film, the narrator tells us that Tenoch and Julio reveal stories about every other to Luisa. Even so, notes the narrator, not with no some degree of omission and “personal myth”. For instance, Tenoch wouldn’t want Julio to know that despite their friendship, he nonetheless can’t get more than maintaining his hands away from Julio’s toilet seats. Likewise, Julio silently envies Tenoch. I can not support but note an ironic twist in the naming of the two buddies. Tenoch, the richer of the two, has the offered name of a native Aztec, while the poorer buddy, Julio, has a much more Spanish name. Perhaps this is to note the irony that each males, simply because of their status, every aspire to what the opposite man has. Tenoch acts as although he would prefer to be among the reduced classes, and Julio hopes of raising his status.

Luisa acts as a sort of balance between the two. On the 1 hand, she came from the same kind of want that Julio was brought up in, as it’s revealed each by means of narration and by way of dialogue that she was raised by her poor aunt. The aunt fell ill and Luisa was left to take care of her, acquiring a job in the field of dentistry, (which, she tells the boys, was not her dream), to support the shrinking household. Fortunately for her, she met the wealthy Jano, who whist her away from her squalor and let her into the bourgeois world. Most tongue-in-cheek of all about this: Jano is a published author. In contrast to Tenoch, Jano utilizes writing to legitimize his credibility as an influential and prosperous figure. The narrator tells us that Jano would host parties filled with “intellectuals”, to whom Luisa could by no means relate. Not only did Luisa endure in the scarcity and insecurity of her poverty, she suffered emotionally whilst in the upper classes, bored and disaffected from her cheating husband. Since Luisa has been in each states as Julio and Tenoch, it is no surprise that she views them equally. After Tenoch sleeps with Luisa, Julio reveals to him that he slept with Tenoch’s girlfriend. Not lengthy soon after, Luisa tries to restore equilibrium by sleeping with Julio, and remarks to Tenoch that she could have just as effortlessly slept with one or the other. Of course, in the end, Luisa briefly reconciles each buddies each emotionally and physically via an expression of free sexuality. In Luisa’s case, sex is practically used as an equalizer, which crosses all classes and all boundaries.

Ultimately, this movie keeps a largely observational tone all through its duration. The narrator tends to make no grand political declarations, nor do the characters. Nonetheless, implicit in the film is an undercurrent of Marxist ideology leaning toward class conflict and dissociation. No matter whether or not Alfonso Cauron would prefer a Marxist outcome for Mexico is not one thing altogether decipherable by means of the film. Even so, it is clear that he recognizes the strife of the class technique in Mexico by means of his use of characterization, narration and irony, and that some kind of reconciliation or unity is necessary.

Cuaron, Alfonso, dir. Y Tu Mama Tambien. 2001. 20th Century Fox. DVD-ROM.

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