Notes on Mayan youth and rural industrialization in Guatemala

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31 Scopus citations


This article explores the experiences of some Mayan youths as they are increasingly drawn into circuits of the world economy as wage workers in rural maquilas. It explores how fundamental restructuring of the world economy and the new international division of labor in the last quarter of the 20th century has directly impacted some households in rural Guatemala. The article sheds light on how maquila factories in rural Guatemala operate as new sites of exploitation by reinforcing and intensifying existing inequalities, intergenerational tensions and for manufacturing powerlessness among rural Mayan adolescents, while simultaneously seducing them with modernity's desires.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-73
Number of pages23
JournalCritique of Anthropology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2003


  • Globalization
  • Guatemala
  • Mayan Indians
  • Rural industrialization
  • Youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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