Indiana Jones and the Mysterious Maya: Mapping Performances and Representations Between the Tourist and the Maya in the Mayan Riviera

  • Author / Creator
    Batchelor, Brian
  • This thesis is a guidebook to the complex networks of representations in the Cobá Mayan Jungle Adventure and Cobá Mayan Village tours in Mexico’s Mayan Riviera. Sold to tourists as opportunities to encounter an authentic Mayan culture and explore the ancient ruins at Cobá, these excursions exemplify the crossroads at which touristic and Western scientific discourses construct a Mayan Other, and can therefore be scrutinized as staged post-colonial encounters mediated by scriptural and performative economies: the Museum of Maya Culture (Castaneda) and the scenario of discovery (Taylor). Tourist and Maya are not discrete identities but rather inter-related performances: the Maya become mysterious and jungle-connected while the tourist plays the modernized adventurer/discoverer. However, the tours’ foundations ultimately crumble due to uncanny and partial representations. As the roles and narratives that present the Maya as indigenous Other fracture, so too do those that construct the tourist as authoritative consumer of cultural differentiation.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Spring 2011
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Arts
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Kerr, Rosalind (Drama)
    • Cisneros, Odile (Modern Languages and Cultural Studies)
    • Muneroni, Stefano (Drama)