Author Archives: pfrese

Final Reflections: Onions and Monumental Sculpture

    “Tourism is often distorted and skewed in favour of the (relative) rich and powerful, whose interests control the destiny of many local communities as well as exerting a pervasive symbolic influence over toured cultures and ways of life” … Continue reading

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New Age Religion on a 1,000 Year Old Canal

We had an amazing trip through a variety of wetland habitats and ancient Maya ruins in the biosphere of Sian Ka’an. It was expensive and hard to get to, but well worth the trip in so many ways. Our tour … Continue reading

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Tulum and Encountering the Other

In our reading of Wearing, Stevenson and Young’s chapter “Encountering the Other”  from Tourist Cultures:  Identity, Place and the Traveller (Sage, 2010), the authors remind us that “in developing nations the indigenous inhabitants are often used as servants by the … Continue reading

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Traditional Altar and Tourist Stops outside Uxmal

Leaving Uxmal we discovered a restaurant that surely relied upon the tour buses that visit Uxmal. In fact, two pulled in after (thank goodness!) we had already ordered. Most of the [other] tourists were Russian.  The bus driver (fluent in … Continue reading

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Unadvertised Ritual at Hacienda Chichén Itzá

As we ventured into the “Nature Reserve” on the Hacienda’s grounds we crossed an old road leading to a small hill on top of which perched the Hacienda’s ancient 16th century Catholic chapel. Obviously there had been a fiesta recently, … Continue reading

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Tit-for-Tat at the Hacienda Spa (or: You put cucumbers on my back, I’ll smear honey on yours…by J. Heath Anderson)

One of the first things all students of anthropology learn is that the personal characteristics of a person doing ethnography will necessarily bias and distort the information gleaned from informants. It’s a kind of cultural Heisenberg principle in which the … Continue reading

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Pakal Ritual of Healing: Syncretism in Contemporary Maya “Healing”

“They had the same superstitious feelings as the Indians of Uxmal; they believed that the ancient buildings were haunted (p. 14). . . .in regard to this building [the Eglesia (sic) at Chichén Itzá] that on Good Friday of every … Continue reading

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Chichen Itza!

  “The patient industry of such a people may well be supposed to have reared the immense mounds and the great stone structures scattered all over the country (p. 18). . . .For a brief space only we broke the … Continue reading

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Looking Forward to Our Journey

I have wanted to know more about the Maya and the interaction of their lives with the larger world, especially as the world moves to visit them as tourists.  I am looking forward to better understanding the role that religion … Continue reading

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Welcome to the “Incidents of Travel in Yucatan” Blog!

Welcome to the blog for the Hales Fund Travel Study group headed to the Yucatán!

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