Josefina Bittar is a M.A. student in the Department of Linguistics at UNM.
Paraguay is well known for its unique linguistic situation in Latin America: almost 90% of its population speaks the indigenous language, Guarani. Half of the population in the country is bilingual in Spanish and Guarani (DGEEC, 2003). Although, traditionally, Guarani has been associated with rural areas, and Spanish, with urban areas (Rubin, 1968), this split does not fully represent Paraguay’s current linguistic reality. In the 1960s, Garvin and Mathiot (1968) already spotted what they called ‘the urbanization of Guarani’. Many decades later, Jinny Choi (2005), compared surveys about language use from 1990 and 2000 taken by people who live in the capital and detected an increase in the use of Guarani. Thus, Choi proposes that there is a tendency towards bilingualism in urban areas.
Katie is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Anthropology at UNM.
The governor of Oaxaca, Gabino Cué Monteagudo, announced early on in his term that tourism was to be his administration’s number one strategy for economic growth, calling it the “anchor” for development (Gobierno del Estado de Oaxaca, A). While tourism has long been the lifeblood of the Oaxacan economy, the massive uprising led by the Popular Assemblies of the Peoples of Oaxaca (APPO) in 2006, hit the industry hard. To recover, the state has ramped up its efforts to increase long-standing, reliable forms of tourism, such as cultural tourism, as well to capture new travel markets that cater to romance and business. This strategy, discussed below in greater detail, attempts to position Oaxaca as simultaneously “traditional and modern." Drawing on preliminary ethnographic research in the capital city, I examine the regulatory and disciplinary techniques that make this truth regime a reality. Next, I look at the illegal takeover of the Zócalo by vendors associated with dissident teachers who belong to Sección 22 of the National Union of Educational Workers (SNTE), as an example of “improper” participation in the tourist economy that fails to adhere to this truth regime. I argue that rather than provoking violence, which would threaten the tourist economy to a greater extent than an unsightly Zócalo, the state endeavors to constrain illegal vendors materially and affectively until they exhaust themselves.