Nationality: United States
Residence: Madison County, NY
Date of Performance/Collection: 04/17/2021
Primary Language: English
Other Language(s): Spanish
BACKGROUND: My informant, MT, is a Mexican-American born in the US. Her parents are both immigrants from Mexico and speak Spanish. I asked MT if she had any familial superstitions or rituals that she wanted to talk about and she brought up this one. Despite not being very spiritual or religious, MT does this ritual every night.
CONTEXT: This piece is from a text conversation with my friend to discuss superstition in her family.
MT: I have to cover all of my mirrors at night because my mom said ghosts and spirits can enter our world through them.
Me: Do you have to use a specific thing to cover it?
MT: I just use a blanket and toss it over.
THOUGHTS: This belief was interesting to me because during my conversation with another friend about folk beliefs I heard about the same ritual only carrying an entirely different meaning. My friend of Irish heritage mentioned that his family always thought that mirrors and photographs can trap souls. Hence when a loved one dies, they cover up mirrors so their soul isn’t trapped in their reflection. It’s interesting however how both cultures associate mirrors and reflections with spirits.