Chapter 2 Discussion Questions and Suggested Activities

Chapter 2 Discussion Questions and Suggested Activities

A Very Brief History of Globalized Calakmul

Discussion Questions

1. What are the two ways this chapter proposes for understanding Calakmul’s global history? Is it helpful to distinguish between these two approaches? Could one approach have captured the array of global engagements described in the chapter?

2.  The researcher Paul James argues the word “globalization” is insufficient to describing today’s current international connections. He believes these connections are too numerous and too diverse to encapsulate in a single word. Instead, he argues we should think in terms of “globalizations” (in the plural). What are all the different global strands listed in the chapter? Are these sufficiently similar that they are part of a singular globalization? Or, are they so different that we should think of a plurality of globalizations?

3. Which of the past global ties associated with Calakmul laid the groundwork for international migration in the 21st century?  Which past global ties likely had little effect on international migration?

Personal reflection

Do you have souvenirs or other objects that symbolize a history of global engagements? Could your own family’s globalized history be symbolized in an object? Why or why not?


Suggested Activities

1. Carry out an internet search of “Calakmul” on the English language world wide web. Carry out the same search on the Spanish language web ( Contrast the two sets of results. If you do not speak Spanish, contrast the images available through the two searches. How might people who only visit the English-language web see Calakmul differently from people who only visit the Spanish-language web?

2. Watch a video on archaeology at Calakmul. How might the depictions of “the Maya” in videos such as these affect perceptions of Indigenous people today?

Inside Emblem Glyphs: Tracking Royal Identities at Calakmul & Dzibanche (Penn Museum)

Calakmul La Gran Ciudad Sagrada de los Mayas (TV UNAM)

3.  Read the “EZLN Demands at the Dialogue Table,” the list of demands posed by the Zapatistas to the Mexican federal government in the months following the 1994 uprising. Contrast those demands with this video report on the Zapatista movement 20 years later. Two decades on, to what extent have the circumstances that led to the Uprising been resolved?

4.  Keep a “globalization diary” for one day. Take note of all the food and objects that you encounter over the course of the day that come from another country. If you can, identify the country of origin if these items.

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