Download Mayan Visions: The Quest for Autonomy in an Age of by June C. Nash PDF

By June C. Nash

An important paintings by way of considered one of anthropology's most crucial students, this ebook presents an advent to the Chiapas Mayan group of Mexico, greater recognized for his or her position within the Zapatista uprising.

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Even more impressive is the recognition by international representatives of the superiority of indigenous knowledge systems in development projects that embody the principle of sustainability. At the 1992 Summit Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, 160 heads of state called for strengthening the rights of indigenous people in recognition of their superior stewardship of the world’s cultural and biological diversity (IUCN Inter-Commission Task Force on Indigenous Peoples 1997:21).

This reduces the selfcorrecting mechanisms of free market flows by promoting speculation while reducing human claims on surpluses. Concomitant with this is an increase in unemployment, with redundant selling and trafficking in drugs that undercut the production of less lucrative subsistence crops and reduce the redistributive function of the state. The terms of trade, that is, that which developing countries receive for their goods and services, have fallen across the board from 1985 to 1994, but the drop in developing economies (from an index of 108 to 96) is greater than that for developed economies of the North (106 to 101) (United Nations 1996, Table 5).

INDIGENOUS COUNTERPLOTS TO GLOBALIZATION PROCESSES The cultural critique (Clifford and Marcus 1986) opens the door to ethnographic analyses cast in a broader humanistic perspective. At the same time, it often cultivates the involution of the discipline of anthropology in a critique not just of the ways of representing the other but of the very process of representation. In order to rescue ourselves from what Jean Comaroff and John Comaroff (1992:37) call the “vapid theoreticism” derived from “our current conceptual obsession with agency, subjectivity, and consciousness,” a key to reconnect with the field might be found within postmodernist strategies for developing the “reflexivity,” “polyphony,” and “dialogue” that Steven Sangren (1988) poses as their core values.

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