A funeral was held in Chichicastenango last fall for the 27 people whose remains were found in clandestine sites in Chontala, a village in the western highlands of Guatemala. The dead were massacred in the bloodbath by army and civil patrols that engulfed the country from 1979-1985.
A young girl cries as her townspeople dig graves for the murdered villagers.
Faces of Guatemala.
Faces of Guatemala.
Faces of Guatemala.
Faces of Guatemala.
This family hopes to earn enough from cotton picking to sustain them for another few months. They are lucky to earn $3 on this day.
Despite a raging cholera outbreak in Guatemala, chlorinated water is a rarity for finca workers. This road serves as bathtub and laundry.
A finca worker washes his daughter in a river of mud. There were no bathing facilities at the finca and the drinking water supply was meager. Workers had. to bath and wash clothes in a low spot in the road where. a creek crossed The water drains from the chemical-laced cotton fields nearby.
Two men strain to lift a cotton sack. A family of four might earn the equivalent of 3 to 4 U S. dollars during a long day of picking.
This small girl suffers from the unrelenting midday sun as she picks in the cotton fields. Infants and toddlers often ride on their mothers back for long hours each day during the picking.
Growers depend on child labor harvest their crops. Children drop out of school for months at a time to accompany their families to the coastal fincas. This boy struggles with a sack of cotton.
A child ties near a pile of coffee beans on a large plantation (finca) on the south coast. Guatemala's indigenous population is forced by economics to leave their villages and work on coffee, cotton and sugar fincas for several months of the year. Often, living conditions and wages are miserable.
Two thirds of the workers at this south coast finca lived under plastic roofed huts. Rain brings misery to all.
Women walk in a holy day Procession in file small Guatemalan mountain village of Santa Alaria de Jesus.
A boy enjoys the festive day as crowds gather in front of the church in Todos Santos.
The day following the horse race finds villagers at the town cemetery, paying respect to the dead.
A young boy participates in the holy week procession in Santiago, Atitlan.
The village of Todos Santos celebrates its name-sake holiday, All Saints Day, with an action-packed fiesta. As many as 50 riders run a quarter-mile course repeatedly throughout the day, stopping at intervals for rounds of drinks. Participants spend months of wages to rent horses and costumes for the race as a way of gaining Prestige in the village.
A villager holds three liquor bottles for use in the fiesta celebrations of the Guatemalan village of Todos Santos. He is a member of Cofradia, a religious brotherhood.