Workshop with Sandra Rozental

Event Start Date: April 05, 2017 11:00 AM
Event End Date: April 05, 2017 1:00 PM


Ethnographies of Patrimony: on the objects of law, property and heritage in Mexico

Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Grinter 319A



How can we do an ethnography of objects, taking seriously the relationships that embed them in specific places and territories? In most studies on heritage, as well as in the recent turn towards material culture in anthropology, objects are considered as bounded and defined entities that can, by definition, be moved, taken, exchanged, kept or returned to people and communities. By focusing on forms of presence and absence of material remains from the Prehispanic past and how they are activated in San Miguel Coatlinchan—a town on the outskirts of Mexico City—known nationally for the state enforced removal of one of Mexico´s most emblematic heritage objects, I propose an ecological approach for thinking about objects that underscores the attachments and interactions that bind humans and non humans. By analyzing objects as isolated things one loses sight of how they are part of the forces and substances that work together, like rain water and healing plants, to guarantee life itself.

In preparation for the workshop, below is Dr. Rozental’s recent article in Anthropological Quarterly -- In the Wake of Mexican Patrimonio: Material Ecologies in San Miguel Coatlinchan.

Article: In the Wake of Mexican Patrimonio