Presented to the Faculty of the Graduate School of The University of Texas at Austin in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts
The University of Texas at Austin
Approved by the Following Supervising Committee:
William E. Doolittle
Gregory W. Knapp
Mercedes L. de Uriarte
I also thank Greg Knapp for his advice, encouragement, and reading list suggestions. Mercedes de Uriarte deserves recognition for being an early supporter of my endeavors and whose perceptive critiques have allowed me to strengthen this work. I appreciate the research suggestions and encouraging comments from both Campbell Pennington and Robert Bye. Emily Young has been a great help and deserves credit for inspiring my thesis topic and helping me outline it. Shannon Crum made the maps for this thesis, provided valuable commentary on drafts, and participated in exercises of procrastination; particularly long conversations about grad school angst and perplexing supervisors. Special thanks goes to Mike Myers for his friendship and advice, Henry Selby for his infectious enthusiasm, and Francisco Perez who kept me laughing in spite of it all.
Since 1990, I have been visiting and sometimes living in the Sierra Tarahumara of Chihuahua where I have forged many good friendships. First and foremost, I thank Padre Luis Verplancken who has shared his valuable insights and provided me with volunteer opportunities enabling me to learn more about the Raramuri. Margarita Quintero and Daniel González have been supportive of my research endeavors no matter which topic or angle I took. Michael Pablo also deserves to be recognized for his generosity in supporting me both emotionally and financially. Alejandrina, Ricardo, Lupita, and Martin have all been good friends who have given me much needed support. I also thank Blanca, Ofelia, Chepa, Elisia, Chavela, Challito, Denise, Nora, Diana, Sergio, Elia, Beatriz, Elsa, Olaya, Marisela, Gustavo, Celestino, Marcos, David, Hector, Noel, Daniel, J. Angel, Manuel, and Jose. My field research was financed with the generosity of all these people who shared their homes and families with me, expecting little or nothing in return (except a little typing, translating, baby-sitting, waitressing, and guiding). I owe them all so much.
I thank the Raramuri of Arareco, Cusarare, and others I have met throughout the Sierra especially Josefa, Lorenzo, Mariquita, Adelita, Ignacio, Rosario, Lucia, Juanita, Guadalupe, Francisco, Maria, Rosita, and many others whose names I withhold for reasons of confidentiality. So many of these culturally "shy" Raramuri were open and trusting with me and it was through their comments and complaints that I was first made aware of the complex problems associated with ethnic tourism.
Finally, I thank my parents and brothers for helping me accomplish those crucial first chapters over Christmas. I specifically thank my big brother, Andy, for Stroopwafels and Hagelslag and my little brother, Seth, for his sarcasm and good jokes.
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