The Meaning of Marianismo in Mexico

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The Meaning of Marianismo in Mexico

Marianismo is the stereotyped gender role of females in Mexican society. To fully understand the meaning of Marianismo we must first understand Machismo, explore their origin (the conquest of Mexico by Hernan Cortes) and discuss how Marianismo has changed in the recent past.

These gender roles are the direct consequence of the Spanish influence from the time that Spain conquered Mexico. When Hernan Cortes and the conquistadors came to christianize the indigenous population of Mexico they were "Flushed with the courage of errant knights, guided by a determination to spread their faith, and feverish with wild dreams of fame and fortune," (Gutierrez p.41). This image of the conquistador became prototype of the modern macho male. Therefore Marianismo can thought of as a reaction to the macho behavior implanted by the Spanish.

Machismo is characterized by hypervirility, the aggressive masculine behavior that is expected of the Latin American male. One who is macho is admired for his physical strength, bold sexual advances toward women, great...

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