In this study, I explore two central examples of Zapatista material culture, the Zapatista mask and the souvenir muñecas zapatistas [Zapatista dolls], as they become plot lines in the co-constructed encuentro that shapes the Zapatista concept internationally leading to a false image of Zapatista homogeneity. Taking on their own dynamic substance that frequently is dislodged from the context of the people they appear to represent they become indicative of the discourse about the Zapatistas, one that does not necessarily originate in the activities of the Zapatistas. I suggest that, within the broader encuentro process between Zapatistas and non-Zapatistas, the Zapatistas function in at least three modalities: the physical, the representation, and the idea. The mask and the doll case histories I present here show how these three modalities relate to each other and interact with outsider interpreters.
Zapatistas, material culture, masks, Zapatista dolls, media representation
Latin American and Iberian Institute, UNM and the Tinker Foundation
Level of Degree
UNM Department of Anthropology
First Committee Member (Chair)
Second Committee Member
Biel, Ilse. "Zapatista Materiality Disseminated: A Co-Construction Reconsidered." (2012). https://digitalrepository.unm.edu/anth_etds/7