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Weaving Identities: Construction of Dress and Self in a Highland Guatemala Town

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Weaving Identities: Construction of Dress and Self in a Highland Guatemala Town Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Traje, the brightly colored traditional dress of the highland Maya, is the principal visual expression of indigenous identity in Guatemala today. Whether worn in beauty pageants, made for religious celebrations, or sold in tourist markets, traje is more than "mere cloth"--it plays an active role in the construction and expression of ethnicity, gender, education, politics, wealth, and nationality for Maya and non-Maya alike. <P> Carol Hendrickson presents an ethnography of clothing focused on the traje--particularly women's traje--of Tecpan, Guatemala, a bi-ethnic community in the central highlands. She covers the period from 1980, when the recent round of violence began, to the early 1990s, when Maya revitalization efforts emerged. <P> Using a symbolic analysis informed by political concerns, Hendrickson seeks to increase the value accorded to a subject like weaving, which is sometimes disparaged as "craft" or "women's work." She examines traje in three dimensions--as part of the enduring images of the "Indian," as an indicator of change in the human life cycle and cloth production, and as a medium for innovation and creative expression. <P> From this study emerges a picture of highland life in which traje and the people who wear it are bound to tradition and place, yet are also actively changing and reflecting the wider world. The book will be important reading for all those interested in the contemporary Maya, the cultural analysis of material culture, and the role of women in culture preservation and change.

Synopsis:

Traje, the brightly colored traditional dress of the highland Maya, is the principal visual expression of indigenous identity in Guatemala today. Whether worn in beauty pageants, made for religious celebrations, or sold in tourist markets, traje is more than mere cloth--it plays an active role in the construction and expression of ethnicity, gender, education, politics, wealth, and nationality for Maya and non-Maya alike.

Carol Hendrickson presents an ethnography of clothing focused on the traje--particularly women's traje--of Tecpan, Guatemala, a bi-ethnic community in the central highlands. She covers the period from 1980, when the recent round of violence began, to the early 1990s, when Maya revitalization efforts emerged.

Using a symbolic analysis informed by political concerns, Hendrickson seeks to increase the value accorded to a subject like weaving, which is sometimes disparaged as craft or women's work. She examines traje in three dimensions--as part of the enduring images of the Indian, as an indicator of change in the human life cycle and cloth production, and as a medium for innovation and creative expression.

From this study emerges a picture of highland life in which traje and the people who wear it are bound to tradition and place, yet are also actively changing and reflecting the wider world. The book will be important reading for all those interested in the contemporary Maya, the cultural analysis of material culture, and the role of women in culture preservation and change.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780292731004
Author:
Hendrickson, Carol
Publisher:
University of Texas Press
Subject:
General
Subject:
Social life and customs
Subject:
Ethnology
Subject:
Anthropology
Subject:
Guatemala
Subject:
Anthropology - General
Publication Date:
19950131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Pages:
261
Dimensions:
9.04x6.06x.73 in. .95 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Art » Folk Art
History and Social Science » Anthropology » Central and South America
History and Social Science » Anthropology » Cultural Anthropology
History and Social Science » Anthropology » General
History and Social Science » Latin America » Guatemala
History and Social Science » World History » General

Weaving Identities: Construction of Dress and Self in a Highland Guatemala Town New Trade Paper
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Product details 261 pages University of Texas Press - English 9780292731004 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Traje, the brightly colored traditional dress of the highland Maya, is the principal visual expression of indigenous identity in Guatemala today. Whether worn in beauty pageants, made for religious celebrations, or sold in tourist markets, traje is more than mere cloth--it plays an active role in the construction and expression of ethnicity, gender, education, politics, wealth, and nationality for Maya and non-Maya alike.

Carol Hendrickson presents an ethnography of clothing focused on the traje--particularly women's traje--of Tecpan, Guatemala, a bi-ethnic community in the central highlands. She covers the period from 1980, when the recent round of violence began, to the early 1990s, when Maya revitalization efforts emerged.

Using a symbolic analysis informed by political concerns, Hendrickson seeks to increase the value accorded to a subject like weaving, which is sometimes disparaged as craft or women's work. She examines traje in three dimensions--as part of the enduring images of the Indian, as an indicator of change in the human life cycle and cloth production, and as a medium for innovation and creative expression.

From this study emerges a picture of highland life in which traje and the people who wear it are bound to tradition and place, yet are also actively changing and reflecting the wider world. The book will be important reading for all those interested in the contemporary Maya, the cultural analysis of material culture, and the role of women in culture preservation and change.

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