Back to Index

MEXICO: Chilango



David Crow writes:"Several years ago, the Royal Spanish Academy accepted "chilango" as the official toponym for Mexico City's inhabitants. Here's a 1999 article from La Jornada:

http://www.jornada.unam.mx/1999/oct99/991005/chilangos.html.

The decision was not universally applauded by Mexican literati (including Mexico's greatest living poet, Josť Emilio Pacheco), but their objections seem to be based more on the imposition of the word from Spain than to the word itself. Though the appellation may have been pejorative at one time (and still may be outside Mexico City), it seems to be a badge of pride to chilangos themselves, who refer to Mexico City as "chilangolandia" and, in youth slang, to someone from Mexico City as belonging to the chilango banda (chilango gang) or as bien chilangote (very chilango). At the risk of contradicting my esteemed fellow WAISers, I've never heard the term used to refer to anyone from outside Mexico City".

Ronald Hilton - 5/14/03


Webmaster