La Llorona: The Weeping Woman

La Llorona: The Weeping Woman

When La Llorona isn’t wailing and looking for her chamacos in the river she sometimes appears on TV like the Got Milk commercial that ran a few years ago. This pre-columbian legend has traveled across time through oral tradition of storytelling. The legend has it that she drowned her children in the river and spends countless nights wailing trying desperately to find them. I’ve often wondered if she had postpartum depression.

The story also has it that at some point she even appeared in the city of Tenochtitlan at night as a woman dressed in white, accompanied by deadly omens which foretold the conquest of Mexico. One night, her voice was heard, weeping loudly: Oh, my poor children, their destruction has arrived, for we must soon depart! Other times the voice would cry in desperation: My children, where shall I take you? Where could I hide you? This was interpreted as an omen for the fall of the Aztec Empire.

No need to start crying over history’s spilled milk or looking for La Llorona by the Chicago River. She will actually be at the Chicago Cultural Center in spirit anyway.

La Llorona: The Weeping Woman
FOCO / Intersections
October 7, 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington St.
Along with the Virgin of Guadalupe and La Malinche, La Llorona forms part of the female triad rooted in Mexican culture. La Llorona is a thriving oral legacy that can be traced to a folk legend that originated during the Spanish Conquest of Mexico. The weeping woman who searches for her lost children is a phantom who is heard but never seen. The phenomenon is reflected in song, literature, film and popular culture, and La Llorona’s story continues to be re-envisioned and revised by contemporary artistic interpretations.

And about that commercial we told you about:


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