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‘The Root Is Maya, the Practice Is Pluralist’: Xel-jú and Indigenous Political Mobilisation in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala

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Artículo de revistaDueholm Rasch, Elisabet . (Wageningen University, The Netherlands ). ‘The Root Is Maya, the Practice Is Pluralist’: Xel-jú and Indigenous Political Mobilisation in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala Bulletin of Latin American Research , enero 2012 vol. 31 no. 1 p. 80-94. Palabras claves:
América Latina
Guatemala
Política, Administración pública
Partidos políticos étnicos / Guatemala / Alcaldes indígenas / Pueblos indígenas / Política local
Siglo XX | Siglo XXI

Resumen:

Since the 1990s Latin America has witnessed the emergence of ethnic, often social movement based, political parties. Within this context Rigoberto Quemé Chay became the first indigenous mayor of Quetzaltenango, the second-largest city of Guatemala, a place that until then had been marked by indigenous political exclusion and racism. This article seeks to explain why Quemé was victorious in 1995 and also why he subsequently lost the election in 2004 through an analysis of the ideational struggle within the (indigenous) political organisation, Xel-jú, which backed Quemé's candidacy twice. I use the movements of ‘departure’, ‘manoeuvre’ and ‘arrival’ in the process of the constitution of hegemonic visions of power to analyse Xel-jú's rise to political power.

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