The Praxis of Cultural Sustainability: A Q’eqchi’ Maya Case of Cultural Autonomy and Resistance against the Monsanto Law in Guatemala

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Center for Teaching and Learning

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This paper explores the cultural ideology of the Mayas in regards to cultural sustenance from multiple perspectives. Rural consciousness and agricultural related rituals are described and analyzed to illustrate the ideological continuity concerning the cultural sustenance of the contemporary rural Q’eqchi’ people. The embedded cultural symbols and agricultural ritual are examined to shed light on indigenous identity and to account for the cultural agency as the foundation of the praxis of cultural sustenance. The Q’eqchi’ Maya consciousness in relation to their praxis of cultural sustainability will be discussed in five dimensions: 1). Indigenous rural consciousness and historical resistance, 2). The subsistence based economy model of milpa system, 3). A landscape of signs and symbols of Maya cosmology, 4). The ritual model of Maya cosmogony and the agricultural rituals for sowing and healing, 5). The indigenous peasant organizing for resistance and defeating the Monsanto Law.


This article was originally published in Theory in Action. The full-text article from the publisher can be found here.

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Theory in Action


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