Describe La Escapia's interpretation of Marx in the Almanac of the Dead.

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Angelita La Escapia is in many ways everything that the Cuban revolutionary leader Bartolomeo is not. She therefore serves as his ideological contrast, even though both revolutionaries wish to see the demise of American capitalism. Bartolomeo is laden with the same immoral prejudices—racism, sexism—that characterize the decline of twentieht-century civilization...

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Angelita La Escapia is in many ways everything that the Cuban revolutionary leader Bartolomeo is not. She therefore serves as his ideological contrast, even though both revolutionaries wish to see the demise of American capitalism. Bartolomeo is laden with the same immoral prejudices—racism, sexism—that characterize the decline of twentieht-century civilization throughout The Almanac more generally. He especially hates Indigenous peoples, viewing them as nothing more than “jungle monkeys and savages” that have no history of their own.

Understanding La Escapia’s views on Marxism is much easier whenever we set her motivations and worldview in contrast with that of Bartolomeo. La Escapia, a Mayan Native, detests the world that capitalism has created, and like any good Marxist, blames it primarily on the rampant greed and unchecked violence of imperial conquest that capitalism has generated. However, unlike Bartolomeo, La Escapia believes that it will be Indigenous peoples who will bring about the most profound changes through revolution. As she says, it was now

“up to the poorest tribal people and survivors of European genocide to show the remaining humans how all could share and live on the earth.”

Throughout the prelude to the Revolution, La Escapia urges Mexican and Central American Indigenous people to rise up and fight for their land and freedom. Above all, Angelita believes in the wisdom of Karl Marx himself. She recognizes, and attempts to convince other indigenous revolutionaries to realize as well, that Marx fully understood the relatedness between human beings and the violence that could arise when one group of humans was given free reign to exploit and brutalize all others. This condition, which she believed the Mexican peoples to be living in her own time, was what the novel consistently refers to as “vampire capitalism.” Marxism, Angelita believes, is the best tool by which indigenous peoples could understand the violence and injustices brought about by vampire capitalism.

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