This series of pictures were taken during my fieldwork in Chiapas, and illustrate the various political uses of San Cristóbal’s main plaza. The plaza, which faces the town’s famous cathedral is a highly touristic place. Named “Plaza de la Paz” (Peace plaza), it serves as the ending point of protests. My time in Mexico coincided with the disappearing of 43 students in Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, which sparked national and international upheaval. The protests in San Cristóbal de las Casas gathered hundreds.
While the plaza is often used by activists to denounces state politics, it is at times invested by government supporters. In the preparation of local elections, I one day came across a rally for the Partido Verde (Green Party).
Finally, the events taking place at the plaza also highlight the transnational place that Chiapas has become something I explore in my work through the impact of international regulations on indigenous midwives.
In fact, the only event that I attended as part of my fieldwork is the celebration of the International Day of the Midwife, on May 5 2016
Mounia El Kotni is a Ph.D. candidate in cultural anthropology at the University at Albany. For more information about her research, please visit her website.