Other Discussions on Mexico

The Tarahumaras

The Tarahumaras are perhaps the most primitive tribe in Mexico. They live in the Tarahumara Mountains, west of Chihuahua. They get little attention. They are not even mentioned in the Mexico volume of the Area Handbook Series. So I called Jeanne Porter, a friend who once lived in Torreon, a good way to the east. She said they came there to trade. Although poor and dirty (because of lack of water), she admired their dignity. Agile runners, they hunt deer and perform the deer dance.

Suddenly they have burst into Mexican TV, the first time I have seen them there. Many tons of food have been collected for them and shipped free to Chihuahua. A goodly number of doctors are donating their time to cure their ailments. Once again, we pay tribute to the humanitarian spirit of the medical profession.

The question remains: why this sudden, much publicized interest in the Tarahumaras? The Indians throughout Mexico, especially in Chiapas, accuse Mexico City of indifference. This aid to the most primitive tribe in Mexico is an attempt to prove that even the poorest Indians are the object of national concern.

Ronald Hilton - 08/12/98

Mexico Spain