Unshocking Revelation: Rich Latin Americans Have Maids [Black, Indian, Same Difference]

It is so interesting when news of racism outside the U.S. reach the U.S., simply because it is a historically-charged, sensitive issue.

The picture above -first published in HOLA! magazine, has reportedly caused some “outrage” in several media outlets, mainly because of the presence of two maids in the background.

The outrage, as I understand it, has to do with the fact that the two maids in question happen to be black, which is, of course, unusual to many Latin Americans who are mostly used to hire indians as help.

My point: Should that picture featured a couple of indian maids (inditas as rich people would lovingly call them) wouldn’t make so many of us blink, would it?

Classism is kind of OK… but racism? God forbid!

7 thoughts on “Unshocking Revelation: Rich Latin Americans Have Maids [Black, Indian, Same Difference]

  1. Having grown up in Latin America, I have experienced the fact that most people don’t think in terms of race (not as much), as they do socioeconomics. Unfortunately, calling someone “india,” whether they are of indigenous roots or not, is more indicative of their “status” in society.

    Not good, not bad…just ignorance. So to answer your question…the women in the photo are more than likely, Black Latinas, and as such, they only make Americans (and Latino Americans) do a double take — not a big deal down south.

  2. On the other hand, I work researching and putting together archives of different themes. For example, the project of 97 Housemaids derives from the research on Guaman Poma de Ayala. I began to collect contemporary images on the same themes as in the chronicle written and drawn by Guaman Poma, when I got to a drawing in which two donzellas (both appearing in the middle of the picture) are given to Pizarro as maids. I started to look for images with contemporary housemaids, and I ended up finding the first one on a Facebook profile, where the maid was occupying the centre of the image, which worked well in comparison with Guaman Poma’s drawing. However, looking for more pictures, I found out that housemaids always appeared in the background or cropped from the images, basically reflecting the position that they have in the high class Peruvian household where they work and practically live. –Daniela Ortiz de Zevallos

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