Essay On Mayan Culture

805 Words4 Pages
The Maya civilization was developed in a place known to modern day as Guatemala before the Spanish contact in 1524. After the Spanish contact, Maya’s cities was destroyed and the Spanish missionary music was brought. As of today, the Maya accounts for half the population of Guatemala. Interestingly, they retain their old traditional music while the loss of their music is conspicuous. This is because there were several impacts caused by other countries, religion, and social function. Particularly, the church prohibited the use of the specific music instruments such as the tun, since the music inferred the tragic history. Those influences created differences in the usage of their music, instrumentation between pre and post Spanish encounter with the Maya culture. For example, spiked vessel rattles are used differently and made of different materials between pre and post Spanish encounter. Today, their music is composed of both their traditional form and other influences brought by other countries. For centuries, the…show more content…
They classify their musical instruments in term of gender role. Male often use instruments called the xul. Men blow xul to sound. On the other hand, female often use idiophones which is self-sounder such as marimba, and spiked vessel rattles. Plucking belongs to female category among Maya, however this action came from stringed instruments which was introduced from Europe. In terms of spiked vessel rattles, the usage is different between pre-encounter and the present. The spiked vessel rattles used to be for curing and divination. In the present days however, they are used for dance-drums to present the Maya world myth. Moreover, the materials that make up the spiked vessel rattles are also different between pre-encounter and the present. They were made of a calabash before the encounter, but now they use various materials such as metal, basketry with seeds, pellet
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