Maya Memories of the Internal Armed Conflict Health and Nutrition Issues in a Small K'iche Maya Community
Cuj, Miguel Angel
In the early 1960’s, internal conflict erupted in the majority of Central American countries. Substantial setbacks in economic development, human right, and social aspects in these countries were the result of the democracy struggling with this conflict. Bogin and Keep (1999) reported that height declined among Mayan and Ladino children from all social classes in Guatemala from 1974 to 1984 (This period included some of the most devastating fighting of the civil war), but an even stronger decline was seen in low-SES (socio economic status) , the average height decline around nine centimeters differences between high-SES and low-SES. During the armed conflict, Guatemalans Maya with low -SES suffered irregular supply of water, no safe water, unsanitary condition, economic instability, declines in food production, and lack healthcare. Maya Indians have been to object of massive discrimination and political repression with a continuous human rights violation. My thesis examines what kind of implications the internal armed conflict in Guatemala has had on health and nutrition matters in Maya rural life. The violence against the Maya people is the materialization of the structural violence that permeates the body, community, and social fabric. The structural violence perspective allows for a nuanced and global account of the pathogenic effects of health under warfare. My thesis proposes a framework for which to examine the structural, collective, and individual violence embodied in chronical social conditions about health and nutrition.