On a recent visit to a local Tucson high school, I was speaking with students of a Latin American literature class. The students were asked to draw self portraits, incorporating symbols that they believed identified them according to their culture and interests. Some of the students had drawn images of Aztec/Nahua calenders, flowers and pictographic heads representing various deities. I began speaking with a young girl who told me that she was from El Salvador. She laughed when I asked her if she liked Tucson. She responded with a variation of how I'd heard Tucson referred to before, as 'hell-hot', or 'hot as hell.'
I told her that the Aztecs might've agreed--although Tucson is located in what is often referred to as Aztlán, where the Aztecs began their migration to Tenochtitlán, the Aztecs also thought of the underworld Mictlan as being located north of them in relation to present day Mexico City DF. So Mictecacihuatl might've been a norteña, sweating like the rest of us under the Arizona sun.
Hopefully the next time I visit, I'll remember the names better, but it's great to see how much interest these students have in pre-Columbian history. Now, if I were only able to incorporate their love of Reggaeton into New World Rhetoric...
UPDATE: I couldn't help but add a video of Calle 13 in a response to my previous point about using reggaeton as a point of entry--Calle 13's Latinoamerica possesses a critical ethos that alludes to the tradition of colonialism in the Americas.