Advertisement

Archaeological Commitment to Participation from the Local to the International: Discovering the El Pilar Community

  • Anabel FordEmail author
Chapter
Part of the One World Archaeology book series (WORLDARCH)

Abstract

The El Pilar community is dynamic and includes proximal villages, the districts of Cayo and Petén, the nations of Belize and Guatemala, and the greater international community interested in the cultural and natural environments of the tropics. Participation at El Pilar comes from all these levels. From its first archaeological recognition in 1983, El Pilar was destined to play a role in the conservation and development of the Maya forest. Large and imposing, with monuments straddling the political boundary between Belize and Guatemala, El Pilar has a complex relationship to these different communities: it is locally linked, nationally divided, and integrated across all levels by an appreciation of the Maya forest and ancient Maya culture. Work at El Pilar has created challenges and potentials over the past three decades and has permeated local households through community outreach at primary schools and village organizations. The site is recognized for a unique brand of tourism promoting Archaeology Under the Canopy that unites traditional Maya farmers and ancient Maya settlement patterns, for the international exploration of solutions past directing a path to sustainable conservation and development.

Keywords

Archaeology Community participation Maya El Pilar 

References

  1. Altieri, M. A. (1999). The ecological role of biodiversity in agroecosystems. Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment, 74, 19–31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Altieri, M. A., & Toledo, V. M. (2005). Natural Resource Management among small-scale farmers in semi-arid lands: Building on traditional knowledge and agroecology. Annals of Arid Zone, 44, 365–385.Google Scholar
  3. Anderson, M. K. (2005). Tending the wild: Native American Knowledge and the Management of California’s Natural Resources. Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  4. Conklin, H. C. (1954). An ethnoecological approach to shifting agriculture. In R. W. Miner (Ed.), Transactions of the New York Academy of Sciences (Vol. 17, pp. 133–142). New York: The New York Academy of Sciences.Google Scholar
  5. Conklin, H. (1957). Hanunóo agriculture: A report on an integral system of shifting cultivation in the Philippines. Rome: FAO Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.Google Scholar
  6. Denevan, W. M. (1992). Stone vs metal axes: The ambiguity of shifting cultivation in prehistoric Amazonia. Journal of the Steward Anthropological Society, 20(1 and 2), 153–165.Google Scholar
  7. Diamond, J. (2005). Collapse: How societies choose to fail or succeed. New York: The Penguin Group.Google Scholar
  8. Everton, M. (2012). The Modern Maya: Incidents of travel and friendship in Yucatán. Austin: University of Texas Press.Google Scholar
  9. Ford, A. (Ed.). (1998). The future of El Pilar: The Integrated Research and Development Plan for the El Pilar Archaeological Reserve for Flora and Fauna, Belize, Guatemala. Washington, DC: Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs.Google Scholar
  10. Ford, A. (2006). The Maya Forest Garden and El Pilar: A Coloring Book. Belize: National Institute of Culture and History.Google Scholar
  11. Ford, A. (2008a). Coloring the past: The El Pilar Maya Forest Garden Coloring Book Project: Plants of the Maya Forest and Gardens of El Pilar: Implications for Environmental Reconstructions. In Sixth World Archaeological Congress, WAC-6, Ireland 2008.Google Scholar
  12. Ford, A. (2008b). Dominant plants of the Maya Forest and Gardens of El Pilar: Implications for paleoenvironmental reconstructions. Journal of Ethnobiology, 28(2), 179–199.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Ford, A. (2012). Jardinería Forestal Maya de El Pilar: The Maya forest garden of El Pilar, Exploring Solutions Past: The Maya Forest Alliance.Google Scholar
  14. Ford, A. (2015). Ancient Maya subsistence: The domestic economy of the Milpa cycle and development of the Maya and their Forest. Research Reports in Belizean Archaeology, 12, 161–174.Google Scholar
  15. Ford, A., & Ellis, C. (2013). Teaching secrets of conservation and prosperity in the Maya Forest. Research Reports in Belizean Archaeology, 10, 305–310.Google Scholar
  16. Ford, A., & Havdra, M. (2006). Archaeology under the canopy: Imagining the Maya of El Pilar. In K. Meethan, A. Anderson, & S. Miles (Eds.), Tourism, consumption and representation: Narratives of place and self (pp. 67–93). Wallingford: CAB International.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Ford, A., & Larios, R. (2000). Huellas Antiguas en la Selva Maya Contemporanea: Patrones de Asentamiento y Medio Ambiente en El Pilar. In XIII Simposio de Investigaciones Arqueologicas en Guatemala (pp. 385–407).Google Scholar
  18. Ford, A., & Nigh, R. (2010). The Milpa cycle and the making of the Maya forest garden. Research Reports in Belizean Archaeology, 7(18), 183–190.Google Scholar
  19. Ford, A., & Nigh, R. (2015). The Maya Forest Garden: Eight millennia of sustainable cultivation in the tropical woodlands. Santa Rosa: Left Coast Press.Google Scholar
  20. Ford, A., Jaqua, A., & Nigh, R. (2012). Paleoenvironmental record, reconstruction, forest succession, and weeds in the Maya Milpa. Research Reports in Belizean Archaeology, 9, 279–288.Google Scholar
  21. Garcia, D. B. (1997). Legal and institutional analysis of the management framework for the El Pilar Archaeological Reserve for Maya Flora and Fauna in Belize and Guatemala (Draft White Paper: 18).Google Scholar
  22. Garcia, D. B., & Salas, O. (1997). Legal and institutional analysis of the management framework for the El Pilar archaeological reserve for Maya Flora and Fauna in Belize and Guatemala, Draft white paper, 18.Google Scholar
  23. Garrett, W. E. (1989). La Ruta Maya. National Geographic, 176(4), 424–479.Google Scholar
  24. Haug, G. H., Hughen, K. A., Sigman, D. M., Peterson, L. C., & Rohl, U. (2001). Southward migration of the Intertropical Convergence Zone through the Holocene. Science, 293(5533), 1304–1308.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Larios Villalta, C. R. (2005). Architectural restoration criteria in the Maya Area. FAMSI. Retrieved from http://www.famsi.org/reports/99026/.
  26. Mathews, J. P. (2009). Chicle: The chewing gum of the Americas, From the Ancient Maya to William Wrigley. Tucson: University of Arizona Press.Google Scholar
  27. Montes, J. A. (1997). Analisis Legal y Institucional Del Marco Administrativo de la Reserva Arqueologica El Pilar para La Flora y Fauna Mayas Belice y Guatemala, University of California, Santa Barbara; University of Florida, 20.Google Scholar
  28. NASA. (2012). Mayan farming, modern farming: Land use in Central America. Retrieved 10 August, 2017, from https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=77055.
  29. NG, National Geographic. (1989). Protecting the Heart of the Maya Land. National Geographic, 176(4), 475–479.Google Scholar
  30. Perry, T. D., Breuker, M., Hernandez-Dunqué, G., & Mitchell, R. (2003). Interaction of microorganisms with Maya Archaeological Materials. In A. Gómez-Pompa, M. F. Allen, S. L. Fedick, & J. J. Jimenez-Osornio (Eds.), The Lowland Maya Area: Three millennia at the human-wildland interface (pp. 175–192). New York: Food Products Press.Google Scholar
  31. Roys, R. L. (1952). Conquest sites and subsequent destruction of Maya Architecture in the interior of Northern Yucatan. Contributions to American Anthropology and History (Vol. 11, pp. 129–182). Washington, DC: Carnegie Institution of Washington.Google Scholar
  32. Schwartz, N. (1990). Forest Society: A social history of Petén. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Steele, J., Adams, J., & Sluckin, T. (1998). Modelling Paleoindian dispersals. World Archaeology, 30(2), 285–305.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Taylor-Ide, D., & Taylor, C. E. (2002). Just and lasting change: When communities own their futures. Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press in Association with Future Generations.Google Scholar
  35. Terán, S., & Rasmussen, C. H. (1995). Genetic diversity and agricultural strategy in 16th century and present-day Yucatecan Milpa Agriculture. Biodiversity and Conservation, 4(4), 363–381.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. TNC, The Nature Conservancy. (2017). Maya Forest. Retrieved January 5, from http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/mexico/placesweprotect/maya-forest.xml.
  37. TripAdvisor. (2017). Things to do near San Ignacio, Belize: El Pilar. Retrieved December, 2017, from https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g291971-d4040388-Reviews-El_Pilar-San_Ignacio_Cayo.html.
  38. Turner, B. L., II, & Sabloff, J. A. (2012). Classic period collapse of the Central Maya Lowlands: Insights about human–environment relationships for sustainability. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 109(35), 13908–13914.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Larios Villalta, C. R. (2009). Manual de Criterios de Restauracion para la Arquitectura Prehispanica, Programa de Desarrollo de Petén para la Conservación de la Reserva de la Biósfera Maya, 95.Google Scholar
  40. WDPA, World Database on Protected Areas (2018). El PIlar Belize-Guatemala. Retrieved from https://protectedplanet.net/el-pilar-archaeological-reserve.
  41. Webster, D. L. (2002). The Fall of the Ancient Maya: Solving the mystery of the Maya collapse. London: Thames & Hudson.Google Scholar
  42. WMF, World Monument Fund. (2017). El Pilar Archaeological Reserve. Retrieved from https://www.wmf.org/project/el-pilar-archaeological-reserve.
  43. Woodburne, M. O. (2010). The great American biotic interchange: Dispersals, tectonics, climate, sea level and holding pens. Journal of Mammalian Evolution, 17(4), 245–264.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Yam, I. O. (2009). Los Montes Yucatecos: La Perceptción de un Espacio en las Fuentes Coloniales. In A. Gusenheimer, J. F. Chuckiak IV, & T. O. Harada (Eds.), Texto y Contexto: Perspectivas Intraculturales en el Análisis de la Literatura Maya Yucateca (pp. 185–203). Bonn: Bonner Amerikanistische Studien, Universidad de Bonn.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Exploring Solutions Past ~ The Maya Forest AllianceSanta BarbaraUSA
  2. 2.MesoAmerican Research Center, University of California Santa BarbaraSanta BarbaraUSA

Personalised recommendations