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MEXICO: Chilango

Luis Rodrigo Diaz Teran Ortegon says: "Here is a little more about chilangos, and it is the jargon they use. It defies understanding, even among non chilango Mexicans, as the following song by Café Tacuba exemplifies: The name of the song is "chilanga banda" (chilango band). stereotype chilangos have been long characterised by speaking with a vulgar "sung" accent. This accent is found more often among uneducated people (often called "nacos"). Although not all people living in Mexico City speak with this language (heavily loaded with jargon with the accompanying accent), to speak like a chilango is synonymous with this. This contributes to the perception among people from the provinces that chilangos are vulgar, dirty, destructive persons. I think the term started to be applied to this sort of chilangos, and then it spread to the rest of the inhabitants of Mexico City". RH: One more example of the decline of spoken language, which seems to be a general phenomenon. I lament it, but it would not surprise me if our universities start teaching chilango Spanish, and anthropologists defend it as a native, and therefore sacrosanct culture.

Ronald Hilton - 5/14/03