Indigenous peoples of Mexico

Populations existing prior to the arrival of the Spanish / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Indigenous peoples of Mexico (Spanish: gente indígena de México, pueblos indígenas de México), Native Mexicans (Spanish: nativos mexicanos) or Mexican Native Americans (Spanish: pueblos originarios de México, lit.'Original peoples of Mexico'), are those who are part of communities that trace their roots back to populations and communities that existed in what is now Mexico before the arrival of Europeans.

Quick facts: Total population, Regions with significant po...
Indigenous peoples of Mexico
Indigenous population by municipality in Mexico according to the CDI.
Total population
11,800,247 identified indigenous people (9.36%).[1] 7,364,645 people living in households where a person speaks an indigenous language. (5.84% of the population)[2][3]
Regions with significant populations
Yucatán, Oaxaca, Chiapas, Quintana Roo, Campeche, Veracruz, Guerrero, Hidalgo, Puebla, Michoacán
Nahuatl, Yucatec Maya, Tzotzil, Mixtec, Zapotec, Otomi, Huichol, Totonac and another 54 living languages along the Mexican territory, as well as Spanish
Christianity (predominantly Roman Catholic, with Amerindian religious elements, including Mesoamerican religion)
Related ethnic groups
Indigenous peoples of the Americas Mestizos in Mexico
Oaxaca Amerindians painting by Felipe Santiago Gutiérrez

The number of indigenous Mexicans is defined through the second article of the Mexican Constitution. The Mexican census does not classify individuals by race, using the cultural-ethnicity of indigenous communities that preserve their indigenous languages, traditions, beliefs, and cultures.[4] As a result, the count of indigenous peoples in Mexico does not include those of mixed indigenous and European heritage who have not preserved their indigenous cultural practices. Genetic studies have found that most Mexicans are of partial indigenous heritage. According to the National Indigenous Institute (INI) and the National Institute of Indigenous Peoples (CDI), in 2012 the indigenous population was approximately 15 million people, divided into 68 ethnic groups.[5] The 2020 Censo General de Población y Vivienda reported 11,132,562 people living in households where someone speaks an indigenous language, and 23,232,391 people who were identified as indigenous based on self-identification.[6]

The indigenous population is distributed throughout the territory of Mexico but is especially concentrated in the Sierra Madre del Sur, the Yucatán Peninsula, the Sierra Madre Oriental, the Sierra Madre Occidental, and neighboring areas. The states with the largest indigenous population are Oaxaca and Yucatán, with the latter having the highest percentage of indigenous population in its own territory. Since the Spanish colonization, the North and Bajio regions of Mexico have had lower percentages of indigenous peoples, but some notable groups include the Rarámuri, the Tepehuán, the Yaquis, and the Yoreme.[7]