Bernardino de Sahagún said in the sixteenth century that the Devil, who abhorred the light, settled in Mexican territory where he made a hiding place of "very thick heather": a forest made up of "unintelligible praises and psalms", impossible to decode. That forest, Sahagún summarized, are the chants. This disturbing sound metaphor can perhaps serve as a new axis for reading certain passages of Mexican history: like the chants, there are undisciplined and ungovernable images that refuse to be decoded by the decoding devices of Western modernity. To keep up with them, we should not try to domesticate them but rather accompany their dynamic of continuous disjunction (or should we say dissonance?).
Bosque de Cantares is a formless entity that threatens to unravel excessively codified historical episodes and, therefore, to allow new secret passages in time. Jumping freely between epochs and events (from the Tlaxcala Child Martyrs of 1527 to the Tzeltales of the twenty-first century, passing through Ignacio Castera's late seventeenth century urban conception or John Kenneth Turner's post-revolutionary Mexico), this series of fragmentary essays seeks to move the roles of Mexican anthropology, history, and literature, because it understands that only from that movement these roles can be repoliticized and serve as a toolbox.
Author: Guillermo Canek García
Dimensions: 16.5 x 11.5 cm