Looking back at leaving Mexico before such a tragedy as the 2017 earthquake that touched so many parts of my romping grounds, I found there are voices I can latch onto that remind everyone, tragedy is not the only path for change towards unity.
In catching up with Repentino. staffer Natalia, who conducted half of the interviews at the 2017 At Fair, she was not only a interviewer, but a respondent. Repentino. looked as the insight was shed on her behalf, on that day at the 2017 Art Fair:
What did you see as a pattern – for example, most people seemed ______________?
Most people seemed challenged by the question. Many were shy to speak and had trouble finding an appropriate answer for the question. Many responded by saying it brought us closer as a community and as a country, responding with a certain level of pride.
What do you feel now – months after this event, as you see and hear these opinions from the interviews – how do you see Mexico now after this event an hearing these individuals’ stories?
Months after the event, I feel like people have forgotten that this event happened and now see it as something from long ago. I see people who think that everything is okay because things are calm now. After conducting these interviews I can tell that people feel proud of their county’s response, but on behalf of the people, not the government. Although many did not share personal stories, one could tell which people felt more affected by the event. The majority of the younger respondents, shared their feeling of fear during the event and the confusion involved with all of the disorder in the city.
What – from all the accounts you have heard from interviewees, would you say all of this says about Mexico as a country?
After the interviews, I could definitely tell that there is a general agreement with the idea of the unity of our country. How people did not hesitate to help others in any way possible. It came to a point where so many people wanted to help that rescue centers had too many volunteers and had to send people home.
Is there a message to other countries that suffer through tragedy ?
There is definitely a message to other countries that, when in hard times, the people themselves are the ones who help each other through these hard times. Audiences also depicted Mexico as a country capable of unity, differing greatly from other countries. They focused on the Mexican character.
And finally, as a student, what does this experience – both the earthquake and hearing reactions to it mean to you as you graduate?
As a student, I was able to listen to multiple responses to the event, they varied greatly on the community to which the people belonged to. In the conducted interviews, many of the respondents shared their experience in the school campus, their momentary fear, and their response in centers and though donations. However, I was also able to hear other stories from people who were more directly affected through the loss of loved ones or property. This experience has made me more empathetic of people through the variety and severity of their responses. It has opened my eyes to how people act during these events, within their capabilities and as a community. I have never seen people more committed and united.
For the full interview list check here:
a mashup of these will be coming shortly!