La Malinche, or Doña Marina, is an important figure in Mexico’ s history; first, as the instrumental translator of Hernán Córtes and later as the symbolic mother of the Mexican Revolution. However, there was never a first-hand account of her life and so it was left to others to record her story. This paper explores how La Malinche has been characterized in various ways to sway a nation’ s affections, whether that nation is Spanish, Aztec or Mexican. The paper also compares Doña Marina to Gabriel García Márquez’ s fictional character Eréndira. Examining the similarities between an author’ s portrayal of a character and the writers of history’ s description of a historical figure allows more insight into Doña Marina’ s reality. This paper explains previous manipulations of La Malinche and how, even today, they continue to change.
Gretchen Oslund, ’06 Golden Valley, MN
Majors: Secondary Education, Spanish
Sponsor: Marcela Ochoa-Shivapour