Mexican childbirth.

Essay by mayaj September 2003

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The rural Mexican culture is made up of many small towns and villages. The social connections among adults in

theses areas are relatively intimate because many of these areas are endoga mous communities. Most newly married

couples live with the man's parents until they are financially stable enough to purchase land of their own to build on.

Though it is less common the couple may decide to live with the wife's parents if the mother and daughter-in-law

don't get along (Kay, 1991, p. 367).

A typical mexican home or compound as they are commonly called. Consists of the family's private living space,

which is likely to be set back from the road. Generally the compound is enclosed by a stone wall and contains

several structures. There is the main house which might be a modern type, built of stone and have a metal roof, or

the traditional wattle and daub walls with a steep palm-thatched roof.

Either way, it is likely to be a one-room house.

The traditional house is oval, has a floor of pressed dirt or tile, and two doors but no windows. Inside the

windowless house, daylight filters in though the palm thatching. At night a single electric bulb provides light. Also

at night, several hammocks are let down from the rafters and the house serves as the family's sleeping quarters. In

every compound there is also a separate cooking hut with an open fire. Near the well there will be a raised trough

covered, by a palm-thatched roof, for the daily clothes-washing. !

Sometimes there is a small bath house built of sticks interwoven with palm leaves, in which house hold members

take their daily baths. The most striking thing about life in the compound is the extent to which various activities

inter mingle. The whole...