Cuando Malinalli conoce a Hernán Cortés, asume que se trata del propio Dios Quetzalcóatl que regresa a liberar a su pueblo. Los dos se enamoran apasionadamente, pero este amor pronto es destruido por la desmedida sed de conquista, poder y riqueza de Cortés.
A lo largo de la historia de México Malinalli/Malinche ha sido conocida por su traición al pueblo indio. Pero recientes investigaciones históricas han demostrado que Malinalli fue la mediadora entre dos culturas, la hispánica y la indígena; y entre dos lenguas, el español y el náhuatl.
Lo que Esquivel ha hecho en esta novela es desafiar la mitología tradicional mediante un retrato muy temperamental del Adán y la Eva de la cultura mestiza, Cortés y Malinalli, con la caída del imperio azteca como telón de fondo. Contada con el lirismo de la tradición cantarina y pictórica del náhuatl, Laura Esquivel nos brinda un mito fundacional de la cultura híbrida del Nuevo Mundo y una extraordinaria historia de amor.
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April 15, 2007
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Excerpt from Malinche Spanish Version by Laura Esquivel
First came the wind. Later, like a flash of lightning, like a silver tongue in the heavens over the Valley of An ' huac, a storm appeared that would wash the blood from the stones. After the sacrifice, the city darkened and thunderous eruptions were heard. Then, a silver serpent appeared in the sky, seen distinctly from many different places. And it began to rain in such a way as had been rarely seen. All afternoon and evening it rained and through the following day as well. For three days the rains would not cease. It rained so hard that the priests and wise men of An ' huac became alarmed. They were accustomed to listening to and interpreting the voice of the water, but on this occasion they insisted that not only was Tl ' loc, God of Rain, trying to tell them something but that by means of the water he had allowed a new light to fall over them, a new vision that would bring a different meaning to their lives, and although they did not yet clearly know what it was, they could feel it in their hearts. Before their minds could correctly interpret the depth of this message that the waters revealed as they fell, the rains stopped and a radiant sun was reflected in myriad places among the small lakes and rivers and canals that had been left brimming with water.
That day, far from the Valley of An ' huac, in the region of Painala, a woman struggled to give birth to her first child. The sound of the rain drowned out her groans. Her mother-in-law, who was acting as midwife, did not know whether to pay more attention to her daughter-in-law about to give birth or to the message of the god Tl ' loc.
It didn't take long for her to decide in favor of her son's wife. It was a difficult delivery. In spite of her long experience, she had never been present at such a birth. While washing the mother-to-be in the bathhouse just prior to the delivery, she had failed to notice that the fetus was in the wrong position. Everything had seemed to be in order, yet the anticipated birth was taking longer than usual. Her daughter-in-law had been naked and squatting for quite a long while and still couldn't deliver. The mother-in-law, realizing that the unborn was unable to pass through the pelvic channel, began to prepare the obsidian knife with which she cut into pieces the fetuses that could not be birthed. She would do this inside the wombs of the mothers, so that they could easily expel them, thus sparing at least their own lives. But suddenly, the future grandmother, kneeling in front of her daughter-in-law, saw the head of the fetus poke out of the vagina and then shrink back a moment later, which probably meant that the umbilical cord was wrapped around its neck. Then, just as suddenly, a small head poked out from between its mother's legs with the umbilical cord caught in its mouth, as if a snake was gagging the infant. The grandmother took the sight as a message from the god Quetzalc ' atl, who in the form of a serpent was coiled around the neck and mouth of her future grandchild. The grandmother quickly took the opportunity to disentangle the cord with her finger. For a few moments, which seemed like an eternity, nothing happened. The hard rain was the only sound that accompanied the moans of the young mother.