An elderly woman with a richly embroidered traditional blouse is sewing by hand outdoors.

Gradual Loss of Traditional Practices

Rural villages are witnessing a slow fading of their identity, customs, traditions, and practices.

The majority of villagers have adopted a more mainstream style of dressing, favoring denim or dress pants, shirts or t-shirts, and shoes or leather sandals. Only a handful still wear manta pants and shirts. Caps are more prevalent than traditional hats and the 'huipil,' a traditional outfit worn by native women, according to Víctor Balam Catzín, a Mayan priest and traditional judge from the Tulum Ceremonial Center.

American Influence

Professor José Carlos has observed that the Mayan culture in the ninth municipality and throughout the state is losing its distinctiveness, especially in schools where the native language is increasingly less spoken. He believes that indigenous customs are being overshadowed by American influences, a phenomenon known as transculturation.

In the 12 rural communities that make up the Maya zone of Tulum, traditional outfits like the "huipil" are becoming less common. Girls and teenagers are swapping them for fitted pants, miniskirts, and small blouses. Meanwhile, boys are showing a preference for branded sneakers over traditional sandals or espadrilles.

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