By Tamara L. Underiner
From the dramatization of neighborhood legends to the staging of performs by means of Shakespeare and different canonical playwrights to the exploration of latest sociopolitical difficulties and their results on girls and kids, Mayan theatre is a flourishing cultural establishment in southern Mexico. a part of a bigger move to outline Mayan self-identity and reclaim a Mayan cultural historical past, theatre in Mayan languages has either mirrored on and contributed to a transforming into expertise of Mayans as modern cultural and political gamers in Mexico and at the world's level. during this booklet, Tamara Underiner attracts on fieldwork with theatre teams in Chiapas, Tabasco, and Yucat?n to watch the Maya peoples within the strategy of defining themselves via theatrical functionality. She seems to be on the actions of 4 theatre teams or networks, targeting their working techniques and on shut analyses of chosen dramatic texts. She indicates that whereas each one staff works below the rubric of Mayan or indigenous theatre, their works also are in consistent discussion, war of words, and collaboration with the broader, non-Mayan global. Her observations therefore demonstrate not just how theatre is an agent of cultural self-definition and community-building but in addition how theatre negotiates complicated family members between indigenous groups in Mayan Mexico, kingdom governments, and non-Mayan artists and researchers.
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Extra resources for Contemporary Theatre in Mayan Mexico: Death-Defying Acts
Tedlock suggests that the death of the warrior is less a sacriﬁce, with its ritual and religious overtones, than a political execution, which in turn casts the play as an early example of sociopolitical theatre. 3 Outside of Rabinal, the piece has achieved a kind of symbolic currency in a changing set of historical circumstances since its introduction to Europe in the mid-nineteenth century. It has been translated into several European languages, and it inspired a poem by Eduard Stücken that later became the basis for the libretto of an opera by the Austrian composer Egon Wellesz.
14 This characterization is worth keeping in mind as we approach, later in this book, other kinds of intercultural borrowings and exchanges in latter-day theatrical exchange. 15 On the one hand, they serve to reinforce indigenous Catholicism (although this is changing as a result of the eﬀects of evangelical Protestantism and its converts). On the surface, that is, they rehearse the same kinds of saint and Bible stories originally introduced by the Spanish in the sixteenth century, mixed with liberal doses of burlesque and improvisation.
31 A rhizomatic view of cultural transactions thus provides a theoretical move away from persistent notions of the ‘‘linear, irreversible and unrepeatable’’ nature of modern time and toward a spatial logic examining the ways diﬀerent cultural apparatuses ‘‘produce the speciﬁc spaces, conﬁgurations, and circulations of power. ’’ 32 Grossberg also calls for a shift in emphasis from the two available models that Bonﬁl Batalla’s itself seems to draw from—the ‘‘colonial model’’ (oppressors vs. 34 Grossberg’s reconﬁguration oﬀers two important gains.