Experimental Ethnography and Ethnographic Installation.

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History & Antecedents: The Field School in Experimental Ethnography

Dr. Castañeda began taking students to Yucatán during the summers to learn about Maya peoples, culture, history and ethnography in 1994. [see student success link] After three field seasons, 1994-1996, the ethnographic training program was re-structured as the Field School in Experimental Ethnography. This project combined the goals of research and teaching in an innovative program. Students took courses in ethnographic methods and cultural anthropology while learning how to do fieldwork. Student researchers focused their participation in one of three projects:



The Ah Dzib P’izté’ Project in Maya Art and Anthropology

The Chilam Balam Project in Memory and History

SELT is The School of Experimental Language Learning, Community Action Research Project


MIRA: Multimedia Interdisciplinary Research in Anthropology, Comparative Tourism Destinations



The Field School in Experimental Ethnography completed its research projects in 2000 after three successful field seasons. In three summer seasons of research, the program trained more than 30 undergraduates and five graduate students and worked in three areas of investigation indicated above.
The Field School was sponsored in part by a major grant from the Fideicomiso México-USA, a binational funding agency comprising the Rockefeller Foundation, the Mexican Fondo Nacional de la Cultura y las Artes, and the Fundación Bancomer. COMEXUS, the Comision México-USA, also provided administrative support.

Based on a re-newed collaboration with Dr. Juan Castillo Cocom beginning in 2000, the Field School was transformed into and re-inaugurated as The Open School of Ethnography and Anthropology. In 2003 the Field School in Experimental Ethnography was re-designed and re-inaugurated as OSEA or The Open School of Ethnography and Anthropology under the auspices of the CITE — The Community Institute of Transcultural Exchange.

Dr. Castillo Cocom currently divides his time between the Universidad Nacional Pedagógica, where he holds a position, and OSEA, where he continues to offer students to work whim and learn from his profound understanding of all things Maya of Yucatán.


MIRA: Multimedia Interdisciplinary Research in Anthropology, Comparative Tourism Destinations 

OSEA develops MIRA a field school project for students investigating comparative tourism destinations in Yucatan Peninsula.


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