El chocolate, el sexo y las mujeres de vida desordenada

Translated title of the contribution: Chocolate, sex, and disorderly women

Martha Few

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


The transformation of chocolate drinks into a basic staple that could be consumed daily by not only Mayas but also Spaniards and castas (mixed-race peoples) probably occurred, in part, through native women working as servants in colonial kitchens. Some men and women consumed chocolate beverages daily, especially at breakfast. Chocolate had properties associated with healing as well. Women continued to prepare chocolate for their families and neighbors as part of their social roles in food procurement and preparation. By the late seventeenth century, as inhabitants from all social and ethnic groups in colonial Guatemala drank chocolate in large quantities, the cultural meanings of chocolate had expanded from ancient Maya ritual and economic meanings and became refashioned and transformed to include associations with female social disorder. Chocolate also proved a useful cover for ritual items designed to force men to return home, or to stop them from using physical violence.

Translated title of the contributionChocolate, sex, and disorderly women
Original languageFrench
Specialist publicationArtes de Mexico
StatePublished - Jun 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science (miscellaneous)


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