This is an online event.
Fortification and Institutionalized Inequality in Mensabak, Chiapas, Mexico
In this talk, Christopher Hernandez of Loyola University’s Department of Anthropology argues that the ancient inhabitants of the Mensabak region of Chiapas, Mexico, incorporated various aspects of their environment to create layer upon layer of defense that in turn promoted social inequality. Within a heavily guarded settlement, elites occupied the highest and most well defended terrain, while exposing the rest of the population to greater potential levels of violence. These differing levels of protection inscribe inequality on the landscape, and perpetuated it across generations. By partnering with local Maya in the archaeological process, his work also addresses contemporary issues. Crafting new histories written with a local Maya community is one step in amplifying the voice of Indigenous peoples and addressing the oppressive legacies of nationalist and colonialist projects.