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Identity recognition has been a long fight for the people of Afro-Mexicans. People of black descent in Mexico lacked recognition and suffered racism for decades. Here, we’ll uncover the hidden story of Afro-Mexicans and their struggle for visibility.
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History of Afro-Mexicans
During the three centuries of Spanish conquest and rule, their authorities forced the migration of over 200,000 slaves from Africa. Several Africans died en route in the ships during this forceful migration, while many others perished in the dire conditions of slave labour.
Despite that, Mexico had the highest number of African slaves than any other country in the Americas in the early 1600s. The most interesting thing is that Africans surpassed the Spanish population in Mexico during the colonial period.
At that time, slaves from Africa were distributed to work across different industries within Mexico. This allowed them to mix with the Spanish and indigenous populations.
People of African heritage were instrumental to Mexico’s early economic growth. They worked in cultivating and developing farmlands, urban jobs, sugar plantain and cattle ranches, and silver mines.
Additionally, they made a remarkable impact on Mexican music. The popular Mexican Jarocho music is of African origin.
Many Afro-Mexican history books are available on Amazon. You can get one or two to learn more about the people Afro-Mexicans and their struggles.
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Challenges Faced by Afro-Mexicans
Despite the Afro-Mexicans’ undeniable contributions and influence, they still face inequalities, discrimination, and violence. The 2022 National Survey on Discrimination (ENADIS) shows that more than half of the population of people of African heritage aged 12 years and above feel seen as foreigners in Mexico by other white Mexicans.
Many say that discrimination based on skin color is among their key issues. They also mentioned facing employment discrimination.
Afro-Mexicans Recognitions Grassroots Movements and Activism
Over the years, efforts have been made to address the present and future of over 2 million people who have accepted their identities as Afro-descendant or Afro-Mexicans. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is one of the top organizations championing this course.
The body promotes intercultural education that sheds light on the Afro-Mexicans’ contributions to Mexico’s development and history. UNESCO sees it as urgent because more than a quarter of Afro-Mexicans still experience high-level racism and discrimination in school.
UNESCO is fighting hard to see that white and black people in Mexico receive equal treatment. They understand that fair treatment for all is important to every nation’s economic growth.
You can get a book on Amazon to learn about the negative impact of racism in society. That’ll help explain why many organizations are fighting it.
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Legal and Political Progress
A few days before the outbreak Covid-19 pandemic in Mexico in 2020, a new census was taking place within the borders of the country. The National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI) carried out the census.
The addition of a survey question asking whether one people considered themselves as Afro-Mexicans, black, or Afro-descendant was a turning point in the struggle for recognition for African descent in Mexico.
The black people in Mexico have contributed a lot to the country’s economy and deserve recognition. You can get books on Amazon to learn more about their contributions and history.
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