Date of Award

Spring 5-2024

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


International Studies

First Advisor

Minju Kwon

Second Advisor

Nancy Rios-Contreras

Third Advisor

Nora K. Rivera


However, the existing literature on the Maya Train does not encompass geographically the entirety of the Yucatan Peninsula. Furthermore, the majority of literature on colorism that is available in English is focused on the impact of colorism on mental health and poverty levels, mostly for Afro-Latinos (preferably referred to as afrodescendientes), while not addressing Indigenous groups. This project examines the social perceptions that non-Indigenous Mexicans hold towards Indigenous people, specifically the Maya people from the case of the Maya Train. I argue that the social perceptions of the people in the Yucatan . By conducting interviews and surveys with both citizens who identify themselves as Maya and those who do not, as well as analyzing existing data and media sources, I demonstrate that there is a negative social perception of the Maya people. The damage being done to the environment by the Maya Train project is worse than what the government promised it would be and this is impacting the Maya people as the jungle is an integral part of their culture. This project contributes to the literature on colorism by connecting colorism to microaggressive speech using Critical Race Theory and Green theory.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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