The current global flows of people, capital, technology, images and ideas--a phenomenon described as "mediascapes" by Arjun Appadurai (1996), traverse the most isolated Maya communities in Guatemala. These flows have recently influenced the creation of hybrid media products among the Maya. Among them we find an emerging indigenous musical genre called "Rock-Maya." I use reception analysis methods to document the encoding and decoding of this new indigenous medium of communication. Through qualitative interviews I attempt to show how K'iche'-Maya youth appropriate, what Motti Regev (1997) calls, the rock aesthetic to promote a sense of K'iche'-Maya youth identity in a modern local, national and global context. I conclude that Rock-Maya music serves as a form of cultural communication and a source for identity construction among young Maya adults. The production and consumption of this music also creates spaces for colonial relationships to be redefined and equalized in Guatemala. A short music video clip forms part of the study.
College and Department
Fine Arts and Communications; Communications
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Botto, Malcolm Miguel, "Music and the Modern Maya: A Reception Study of Rock-Maya Music in Guatemala" (2008). Theses and Dissertations. 1459.
Guatemala, K'iche', Maya, identity, communication, music, globalization