N áhuatl mandatory in public schools in Mexico Ci ty

Douglas Hinds cedecor at gmx.net
Sun Aug 19 20:55:00 UTC 2007

> I am looking forward to read what the Indigenous leaderships says
> about the subject.

> Marcos

In response to your request (plus I too am interested) I was able to
discuss this with Jesus, the ex-head of Sedesol's indigenous support
program who is also Secretary General of the Consejo Supremo
Nacional Indigena, an organization originally formed in 1521 (the
first time the various indigenous "ethnias" had banded together) in
order to preserve their culture at the point they realized that the
invading forces could not be stopped (Guns, Germs and Steel?).

During the 90's the CSNI was reestablished as an Asociación Civil
(non profit organization). However, when Amalia Garcia refused Fox's
offer to head the Social Development Secretariat, that position was
claimed by the party Fox used to get into power. (For those unaware,
Mexico's electoral processes are publicly funded -something the USA
sorely needs- and the funds are channelled only through political

Then, the split between Mexico's National Indigenous Institute (INI)
and the Interamerican Indigenous Institute (III) became even
greater, when Fox changed the name to something totally different,
ignoring the Pazquaro Accords Mexico signed in the 1940's.

Although the last PRI government helped form the CSNI originally,
the group is interested in establishing it's own political presence
in order to achieve the degree of autonomy that the constitution
(and the C169) indicates, particularly in the municipalities (which
include rural areas in Mexico - city governments do not exist as
such, except for the Federal District D.F.) in which they constitute
a majority and yet, often lack even a single councilman (regidor).

Doing this requires resources that should be available this year or
next. (I thought that this might be of interest to some of you,
particularly any in Mexico that might want to collaborate).

Getting back to Marcelo Ebrand's initiative, Jesus wasn't sure
whether the measure is obligatory or not but thought that it was and
in any case, it begins tomorrow (Monday). He too wondered where they
were going to get all the nahuatl instructors this will take.

Unfortunately I still couldn't get through to Santiago in
Tamazunchale but I'll try again at 6 am tomorrow. IAC, Jesus agreed
that Santiago probably teaches *in* Nahuatl but doesn't teach
Nahuatl itself (although I suppose he could).

It seems to me that if they're going to teach Nahuatl they ought to
teach the culture also.

I could also check with another PRD govt. near el D.F. (Edomex) that
might know more about this, since it's a PRD initiative and we have
an established relationship with that particular local govt.

Another thing - I used to teach language and IMO, 3 or 4 classes a
week of 2-3 hours each are needed in order to do much good and if
it's any less than that I doubt that it will take on much
significance, educationally speaking.

Douglas Hinds

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