Feministing Jamz: Mare Advertencia Lirika

Mare holds a microphone with both hands, her face only half lit. She is wearing colorful bracelets and earrings.

(Image Credit: Dioptría Studio)

Mare Advertencia Lirika is a Zapotec Hip Hop artist from Oaxaca, Mexico whose music speaks out for the rights of indigenous women. Now 27, Lírikan began rapping at age 16, using her lyrics to challenge sexism in her own community and call out the Mexican state for its abysmal treatment of indigenous communities. 

In this Animal Politico interview, the self-identified feminist shares that “Rap helped to empower me as a woman. It gave me a tool, helped me to change, to find myself, find my identity, and to rebuild myself.” Lirika incorporates various musical styles — funk, reggae, rap, huapango — to create her sound, and her lyrics cover topics ranging from standards of beauty within the media, to the forced disappearances of women in Mexico  to reproductive justice and bodily autonomy.

Mare has on a fierce face, rapping while surrounded by older Triqui women.

Still from “Devuelvanmelas.”

“In my lyrics, I speak about social justices because I’ve also lived them in my own experience. I speak about the situation of violence there is [in Mexico], of corruption, gender based violence. I also talk about the politics of our government, and about the criminalization of our communities,” Lirika continues.

In the below video, the artist collaborated with the Oaxacan funk band Quimono to highlight the rates of violence against women in Mexico, many of them indigenous. The story focuses on the particular case of Antonia Ramírez, an indigenous Triqui woman whose daughters Virginia Ortiz and Daniela Ortiz disappeared in 2007, depicting her continuing struggle to find her daughters. As Antonia walks the streets of Oaxaca, the chorus plays alongside her, “We aren’t searching, we are demanding: give them back!” In the next shot, Lirika and Antonia are standing with tens of other Triqui women, holding images of the women they’ve lost.

The violence against women in Mexico has complex and deep roots in militarism, patriarchy, racism towards indigenous peoples and global capitalism that renders indigenous women “disposable.” But no matter how complicated the reasons behind the epidemic, indigenous women have one clear demand: Devuelvanmelas!

Give them back. Give our mothers, sisters, daughters, cousins, friends back.

You can read more about Antonia Ramirez’s campaign to find her daughters here.

Also be sure to take a look at Mare Advertencia Lirika’s Facebook page and her YouTube channel. 

Bay Area, California

Juliana is a digital storyteller for social change. As a writer at Feministing since 2013, her work has focused on women's movements throughout the Americas for environmental justice, immigrant rights, and reproductive justice. In addition to her writing, Juliana is a Senior Campaigner at Change.org, where she works to close the gap between the powerful and everyone else by supporting people from across the country to launch, escalate and win their campaigns for justice.

Juliana is a Latina feminist writer and campaigner based in the Bay Area.

Read more about Juliana

Join the Conversation