A Place Called Chiapas Essay

A Place Called Chiapas Essay

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As a viewer, the documentary’s intention to inform is more completely fulfilled by research conducted beyond the scope of the camera lens. Had I never written this paper, for instance, the reason for all the violence embedded within the subject matter would remain as enigmatic as the documentary itself.

On the other hand, it’s possible that by contextualizing the pieces of the story in absence of an interconnected puzzle, the documentary forces viewer’s to think for themselves. If the Nettie Wild’s interests were more vested in raising awareness than delivering objective information, this documentary successfully satisfies its purpose. Her travelogues compel me to expand my perspective and develop my opinions on the matter under the complete scope of information available.

In this sense, the film tests the resiliency of good human nature. The modern world is becoming increasingly set in its extremes, as the lifestyle of the poor vastly contrasts that of the wealthy. The implementation of NAFTA reflects this movement toward separation, despite the fact that it was intended to boost trade between regions and create more prosperity on both sides of the United States-Mexico border. The Mexican elites saw it as their salvation. Others saw it as “ a death sentence.” The Chiapas region itself exemplifies this gap, as well. The region was split between the relatively prosperous west, which was fertile and characterized by commercial development, and the poor, subsistence-oriented east. It was not by accident that the Zapatista movement began in Chiapas as the struggle between ranchers, landowners, and subsistence farmers was intensified by NAFTA.

The thinning middle class associated with this tremendous dualism leaves us further disco...


... middle of paper ...


...litary group and the Zapatistas at bay, and the true power of the media becomes as glaringly clear as the conflict it can spur. On camera, the “Peace and Justice” party accuse the Zapatistas of violence. Off camera, they threaten to kill the Mexican members of the film crew.


Works Cited

A Place Called Chiapas. (n.d.). Internationale Filmtage der Menschenrechte -. Retrieved April 30, 2014, from http://www.filmfestival-der-menschenrechte.de/fitame-old/archiv/filmdetail319e.html?Nr=21&lang=en&year=01
A Place Called Chiapas. (1998, January 1). . Retrieved April 30, 2014, from http://www.zeitgeistfilms.com/films/placecalledchiapas/presskit.pdf
Wild, N. (Director). (1998). A Place Called Chiapas Canada: National Film Board of Canada.
Burns, E. B., & Charlip, J. A. (2007). Latin America: an interpretive history (8th ed.). Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson Prentice Hall.

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