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"The word death is not pronounced in New York, in Paris, in London, because it burns the lips. The Mexican, in contrast, is familiar with death, jokes about it, caresses it, sleeps with it, celebrates it, it is one of his favorite toys and his most steadfast love." Thus Octavio Paz describes a cultural phenomenon that has for centuries fascinated scholars and aficionados of virtually every field of Mexican studies, "el culto a la muerte," the cult of death, a term that readily calls to the mind of anyone familiar with Mexico and her culture the unusually constant place of death in the minds and lives of the Mexican people. In this volume, author Brodman examines the Mexican cult of death from a variety of disciplinary perspectives to provide the most comprehensive analysis yet of the origins and nature of the Mexican cult of death and its relationship to Mexican arts, literature and culture.

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