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Choi, Jinsook
Division of General Studies
Research Interests
  • Language and Culture
  • Language policy
  • Language ideology
  • Multiculturalism
  • Bilingual education


과테말라에서의 "인종"(race) 개념에 대한 역사적 고찰

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과테말라에서의 "인종"(race) 개념에 대한 역사적 고찰
Other Titles
A Study of the Notion of ‘Race' in Latin America: The Case of Guatemala
Choi, Jinsook
Issue Date
라틴아메리카연구, v.20, no.3, pp.173 - 195
This paper examines the notion of ‘race' in Guatemala. The goal of this paper is to discuss how the notion of race in Guatemala has been shaped in specific sociohistorical conditions since the post-colonial period until now. In the 19th</SUB>century, the nation-state began to be built, accompanied by a new ideology of ‘the national development,' which in general excluded the Maya from the benefits of economic development, but assigned the biological category of ‘race' to the Maya. Racist attitudes have continued forming the dominant ideology of the oligarchy and ladino intellectuals elaborate and transmit a coherent and homogeneous form of ideology that includes their vision of indigenous people. During the popular movements period in Guatmala, the main ideology of the leftist guerrillas was based on class struggles which sought the unification of Indian peasants and ladino workers. The discourse of ‘race' that has been useful to discriminate against Mayan Indians has recently been challenged by Mayan cultural activists' efforts to redefine Mayan Indians as a unified ethnicity. Mayan cultural activists are seeking self-determination, forging a homogenous identity or solidarity as a tool of resisting the dominant. The current movement reflects a change of understanding of identity not just from class-centered as in the guerrilla movement, but also from community-bound ethnicity to the level of ‘Pan-Mayan' identity. In conclusion, the notion of ‘race' that was associated with the identity of the Maya in Guatemala has been invented, redefined, and transformed in specific historical conditions, This study will further our understanding of the notion of ‘race' in Latin America as an ideology and as a social reality.
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