Siler City

Dubbed as a prosperous city full of work by the narrator in the beginning of the video, Siler City appears to offer people the chance to make a living in a plethora of ways. The tone of the video initially sounds quite positives but it is not without its cons. The main motivator of the store owner, the butcher, the baker, and the cook all seem to be coming to Siler City for greater job opportunities. Evidently, there was little in ways of work in Mexico which encouraged the people to leave their homes and families in search of something which can offer a stable income. However, the sacrifices also prove to take a toll on the workers as time seems to wear them down.

Watching this video, the passage of time seems to slow down and the scenes really show the day to day work routine of each individual. It isn’t a quick scene but it lingers and details the steps needed to create the foods. The viewer becomes cognizant of how each employee functions and has been functioning for a number of years. This video is reminiscent of a past video that had been seen by Southern Foodways as well, “Un Buen Carnicero.” Somehow, both videos have a melancholic tone in it. The man named Pepe Hernandez Rios, the butcher of the store, had expressed coming to the town to find work and never leaving the city. He is separated from his family but there are circumstances which seem to prevent him from leaving which leads to this feeling of being trapped with little choices to do anything else but continue working day after day, year after year.


Southern Foodways, et al. “Siler City: Bienvenido a Trabajar.” Vimeo, 10 Apr. 2018,

One thought on “Siler City

  1. Great analysis of the video. Yes, the Southern Foodways documentaries really focus on the people and tell stories through food–this is why I like them, both the videos and the organization. In fact, SFA was what inspired me to design this course, and they are big fans of the work y’all are doing.


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