Y Tu Mama Tambien

A Marxist Reading of Y Tu Mama Tambien

In the film Y Tu Mama Tambien, the characters Tenoch, Julio and Luisa represent Mexican economic classes and social stratification in distinct ways. A Marxist would argue that Tenoch, the more affluent male lead of the trio, represents a bourgeois who has been shaped by the customs and expectations of his class, though he is in denial of it. He dreams of being a writer, idealizing this as someone who thinks and speaks freely, and is not tied down to the constraints of finances. This is the opposite of an economist, which is what his father, a prominent statesman, expects of him. He befriends people like Saba and Julio, tying himself to the “lower classes” and justifying, in his own mind, his dissociation with the mores of his class. A Marxist would perhaps argue that Tenoch is having an existential conflict with his own class, as the pressure on him to be prosperous and successful are not in line with his personal aspirations. On the other hand, perhaps it is because of his class and prosperity that he feels no concern for money; he takes for granted what he has in abundance because someone else, and not he, had to labour for it. His search for “freedom” and his solidarity with people of a lower echelon manifest themselves in...

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