Ekeko Essay

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Ekheko In the country of Bolivia there is a group of Indians called the Aymara. Every year they have a festival called Alactis Fair. It is a 3 day celebration of their god Ekeko, held in the city of La Paz, the festival has taken place every year since 1781. Ekeko is the god of prosperity, he is thought to look like a little guy with a large stomach with an open mouth and his arms spread wide open. In 1781, a group of Indians lead byTupac Katari rebelled against Spanish rule and put siege to the city of La Paz, where Paulita Tintaya, of Aymara blood, a maid to the wife of the governor and army commander of La Paz, Doña. The girl was in love with a servant of the governor. The name of this servant was Isidro Choquehuanca, also an Aymara, who had to stay at the governor’s farm. Isidro had given Paulita a neclace consisting of a clay figure in the shape of Don Sebastian de Rojas, their master and father of Doña Josefa, who was a very short, fat, jovial and red-faced Spanish man. After months of war, people of La Paz were in a desperate situation, as food and water were hard to come by at the time. They had to eat even cats and dogs so they didn’t die of starvation. Only in Paulita’s kitchen food was never lacking, thanks to the clay figure she had put in a little altar, which had miraculously provided the maid with enough dried meat, corn and biscuits. In reality, it was Isidro who had given her these provisions, as he was in the indigenous army and therefore able to secretly enter the city. When Doña Josefa became sick because of malnutrition, Paulita decided to share her food with her and the governor, who wanted to know where she had gotten it from. She told the governor that the clay figure, whom she called Ekheko, had the power to make food appear when needed, she did not want to put Isidro at risk of being caught and tortured. The whole house survived

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