Tuesday, 5 May 2009


As a Mexican living in the UK, I’ve sensed a disconcerting feeling of rejection towards everything related to Mexico, something that I’ve never experienced whilst living here and which is rising every day as the epidemic spreads. When news of the virus broke, it was called ‘Mexican swine flu’, with the emphasis on the country of origin of this ‘dirty’ disease. This designation combined with the visual images of people in Mexico City wearing breathing-masks, will certainly leave a deep mark in the collective subconscious. For a long time anything branded Mexican will become related to that which is dirty, unhealthy, sick. Nowadays being Mexican means hoping not to sneeze and cause alarm amongst people who are already in a panic. Myself, being completely healthy, feel infected not by the flu virus but by the fears of the people being whipped into a panic by the excessive and sensationalist coverage by the media.