Women in Mexico Brawl in Ritual to the Rain Gods
Kimberly B. Johnson - Konbini
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February 25, 2017
In the small Mexican village of La Esperanza located in the southwestern state of Guerrero, seasonal drought is driving women to brawl. Practiced by the indigenous peoples of Mexico and El Salvador and descendants of the Aztecs, the Nahua as they are known, see blood spill as a form of ancestral sacrifice to their gods.
Every May, women from across the region gather in the village to begin an annual ritual intended to usher in the rain before dry and humid summers. The ritual is simple; they do this by beating one another to a bloody pulp.
This female fight club of La Esperanza Mexico also coincides with the planting of new crops. So while the women are brawling one another, the men of the village toil away in the fields.
On the day of the official ceremony, ladies wake early to prepare a massive pot-luck of cultural dishes including an assortment of turkey, chicken, rice, boiled eggs and tortillas.
At noon, villagers meet at Cruzco, a sacred place where a spring is found and the people gather to offer flowers, food, copal, waxes, prayers and music to their deities. Then in the afternoon, the people of the village head towards the main event.
Once prayers and offerings are given to the deities, the fights begin. Matches are undertaken by any able-bodied woman from the community of any age. The fights are by nature extremely violent and bloody, with the participants completely unconcerned with wins or losses, but with appeasing the gods of nature by offering as much bloodshed as possible.
Explore the bloody subculture of female fight clubs around the world at Konbini
Photos: Rodrigo Cruz
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