Event: VIRTUAL PIZZA TALK: From the Canopy to the Caye: Two of Britain's Colonial Ventures in Nineteenth-Century Belize

Date & Time

December 2, 2020 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
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Contact Information

Sumiji Takahashi



Event Type

Pizza Talk

Event Details

Dr. Tracie Mayfield, Lecturer, Department of Anthropology, University of Southern California
Wednesday, December 2nd, 12:00pm - 1:00pm PT

During the nineteenth-century, Latin America was a hotbed of trade and commerce driven principally by extractive industries such as agriculture (principally sugar) and hardwood collection. Such ventures required large injections of capital into the creation and maintenance of productive landscapes as well as for hiring, housing, and feeding the workers who provided labor and management. This presentation will explore two such sites in Belize.  Lamanai, an inland site, which is located in what is now the Orange Walk District of northwestern Belize and San Pedro Town, which is located off the coast of Belize on Ambergris Caye. During the nineteenth-century British colonists established settlements at these sites: at Lamanai, to plant sugar cane and harvest logwood and mahogany and, on Ambergris Caye to cultivate a coconut plantation. Along with wild fauna, chicken, beef, and bottled, canned, or barreled products such as soda water, salted pork, and potted meat, the residents of nineteenth-century Lamanai and San Pedro Town were also active consumers of tobacco and bottled alcoholic beverages. In addition, earned labor money was used to purchase bottled medicines, health and hygiene products (e.g. chamber pots), and wearable objects such as buttons and boot heels. Here we compare and contrast these two contemporary sites, situated in very different landscapes, but both within the Latin American, British colonial-industrial complex. 

Register for this Cotsen Virtual Pizza Talk here! You will receive instructions on viewing the talk after registering.