A Spirit of Rebellion Lives On: The Tihosuco Heritage Preservation and Community Development Project
What benefit can practicing archaeology bring to a developing community? How do communities balance the need for economic development and the desire to maintain and explore their cultural heritage? The Tihosuco Heritage Preservation and Community Development Project is a cooperative, community-based project in the town of Tihosuco, Quintana Roo, Mexico. Tihosuco rests at the epicenter of the Caste War (1847-1901) when Maya rebelled against Mexico. The town remains part of a much larger story of Maya resistance throughout the Yucatan peninsula which still resonates today as the core of local identity. Through archaeological explorations at nearby Tela, a town abandoned during the war, we seek to enrich what the community knows about the Caste War in this region. Further, the project is considering the potential for sustainable tourism development surrounding the rich revolutionary history of Tihosuco, Tela, and other nearby towns. We argue that this project has the potential to spur economic growth in the town while challenging commonly held conceptions of Maya identity and cultural heritage throughout the Yucatan where an ancient Maya heritage so often dominates.
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A Spirit of Rebellion Lives On: The Tihosuco Heritage Preservation and Community Development Project. Richard Leventhan, Tiffany Cain. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. 2014 ( tDAR id: 437356)