Rental Format(s): Digital File
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A magnificent figure emerges from the jaws of a mythical animal carved with inscriptions. Known as The Dragon of Quiriguá, this enigmatic stone altar is one of the most extraordinary ancient sculptures on the continent. Spared from deforestation during the introduction of banana plants at the end of the nineteenth century, the seventy-five wooded acres of the Maya site of Quiriguá, stand at the center of the Guatemalan lowlands of the South as a reminder of how things were before the region was turned into a banana republic. Quiriguá houses temple structures, pyramids, the tallest stelae, and Altar P, known as The Dragon.

In a quiet and reflective tone, Paradox alternates between The Dragon of Quiriguá and the feverish activities of the harvesting and processing of bananas in the immediate region, moving through a community transformed by questionable labor and trade agreements.

Marked by a truculent history of colonialism connected with land appropriation, the former United Fruit Company, labor struggles, political corruption, military invasions and undercover operations, the paradox suggested by the title of this work provocatively juxtaposes our admiration of the continent's exuberant ancient past with the current conditions of the Latin American working class, both at home or in exile.

- "The Paradoxes of Quiriguá," by Jesse Lerner:

Production format: Digital video

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