Mayas in the Marketplace: Tourism, Globalization, and Cultural Identity [NOOK Book]

Overview

Selling handicrafts to tourists has brought the Maya peoples of Guatemala into the world market. Vendors from rural communities now offer their wares to more than 500,000 international tourists annually in the marketplaces of larger cities such as Antigua, Guatemala City, Panajachel, and Chichicastenango. Like businesspeople anywhere, Maya artisans analyze the desires and needs of their customers and shape their products to meet the demands of the market. But how has adapting to the global marketplace ...
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Mayas in the Marketplace: Tourism, Globalization, and Cultural Identity

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Overview

Selling handicrafts to tourists has brought the Maya peoples of Guatemala into the world market. Vendors from rural communities now offer their wares to more than 500,000 international tourists annually in the marketplaces of larger cities such as Antigua, Guatemala City, Panajachel, and Chichicastenango. Like businesspeople anywhere, Maya artisans analyze the desires and needs of their customers and shape their products to meet the demands of the market. But how has adapting to the global marketplace reciprocally shaped the identity and cultural practices of the Maya peoples? Drawing on over a decade of fieldwork, Walter Little presents the first ethnographic study of Maya handicraft vendors in the international marketplace. Focusing on Kaqchikel Mayas who commute to Antigua to sell their goods, he explores three significant issues: • how the tourist marketplace conflates global and local distinctions.• how the marketplace becomes a border zone where national and international, developed and underdeveloped, and indigenous and non-indigenous come together.• how marketing to tourists changes social roles, gender relationships, and ethnic identity in the vendors’ home communities.Little’s wide-ranging research challenges our current understanding of tourism’s negative impact on indigenous communities. He demonstrates that the Maya are maintaining a specific, community-based sense of Maya identity, even as they commodify their culture for tourist consumption in the world market.
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Editorial Reviews

Journal of Latin American Geography
This book is not only very readable, but also highly informative in the subject area of performance, as well as place, and how indigenous peoples have become engaged in, and deal with, that slippery phenomenon called globalization.
-- Claudia Sawyer, Department of Geography, Syracuse University
American Ethnologist
Walter E. Little paints a complex and nuanced portrait of Maya identity formation in Mayas in the Marketplace.
-- William Warner Wood, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780292788305
  • Publisher: University of Texas Press
  • Publication date: 7/5/2010
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • File size: 5 MB

Meet the Author

Walter E. Little is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University at Albany, State University of New York.
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Table of Contents

Introduction : subjectivity and fieldwork among Kaqchikel vendors 3
Ch. 1 Guatemala as a living history museum 35
Ch. 2 Place and people in a transnational borderzone city 64
Ch. 3 Antigua Tipica markets and identity interaction 89
Ch. 4 Mercado de Artesania Compania de Jesus and the politics of vending 115
Ch. 5 Gendered marketplace and household reorganization 143
Ch. 6 The places Kaqchikel Maya vendors call home 178
Ch. 7 Home as a place of exhibition and performance in San Antonio Aguas Calientes 203
Ch. 8 Marketing Maya culture in Santa Catarina Palopo 227
Conclusion : traditions and commodities 261
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