A Mayan Life
category: Jims Guatemala

mayan life.jpgI just finished a really good book that I want to share with you, called A Mayan Life. I got it from Gregorio, the head of the Peace Corps Guatemala training staff. He thought I might be interested because it was written by a Q’anjob’al author named Gaspar Pedro Gonzales. He’s from Soloma, which is very close to my village- 90 minutes or so by public transport, and the closest place to do banking or get butter.

What really grabbed me about this book is that it is probably the only book ever written by the Q’anjob’al, talking about the Q’anjob’al, from a wider perspective of their overall place in humanity. As an outsider living in their culture, I found the occurrences in the tale both familiar and insightful; it’s packed with Q’anjob’al names and places and expressions that I hear every day. The Q’anjob’al culture is slowly disappearing, so it chills me to think that I am one of maybe a dozen people in the whole world who would have this perspective while reading about it.

If you are one of our readers that are interested in Mayan culture, I think you will find this book both moving and insightful. If you are a family member and want to get a good look at how our villagers live, you might enjoy this book as well. It’s an honest, cutting protrayal of the Mayan struggle against discrimination, fate, and the history of their country while trying to maintain their dignity and way of life.

You can find it on Amazon here.

Posted by: jfanjoy