Homegardens and the dynamics of Totonac domestic groups in Veracruz, Mexico

  • Ana Lid del Angel-Pérez Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Forestales Agrícolas y Pecuarias
Keywords: culture, nuclear families, extensive families, survival strategies, social reproduction


The Totonac are an ethnic group that have used homegardens as a strategy for production and social reproduction since pre-colonial Mexico. These homegardens, associated with a family dynamic exhibiting various stages of the domestic group cycle, are flexible elements that allow them to adapt to changing environmental conditions. Fieldwork in the Totonac area suggests that several types of homegardens are associated with different stages of the domestic group cycle. The author concludes that it is not convenient to approach the study of homegardens only through production logic, as this prevents observing the dynamics within them and perceiving their relationship with the organisation of everyday life and the domestic group reproduction in a changing context and with different styles of adaptation, resilience, storage, reprocessing and cultural continuity.