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A study about democrazy and sport in Guatemala
2002 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor)Student thesis
Abstract [en]

This essay is about Guatemala, a country in Central America, which belongs to the Third World. The main ambition with this essay was to try to illustrate the life for the Guatemalans. This is realized through discussions about the history of the social, cultural and political systems. Furthermore I discuss development in the Third world and Guatemala, about the development of democracy and finally about education and sport. One of the main questions of concern was if, and how, sport could be a factor in creating a brighter future for the children. Throughout the essay, a regional geographical discussion is used, as well as development theories is discussed. A field trip was made to Guatemala in November 2001 until January 2002. Observations were made through different trips in the country. The main observation, was made to the ACJ- (KFUK/KFUM-YWCA/YMCA) camp CHICHOJ, in the region of Alta Verapaz. However the major part of the empirical material is from literature, collected both in Sweden and in the FLACSO library in Guatemala City. This field-study was made possible through a scholarship, offered by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) within the Minor Field Study-programme, and also the reason for writing the essay in English. The results indicate that organised sport activities has been used among the people for many years, but mainly it belonged to the upper class of the society, in many ways it still does. The impressions from local people in Guatemala are that it even has become more unequal. The area where the children play or practice sport is very limit. Places where the children play is usually dangerous, because it is close to heavy traffic roads, with lots of unhealthy smog, as well as lots of litter. Some of those places also are used as places for gang members and drug dealing. The Peace Accord in 1996, which ended 36 years of civil war, was of course, one important step in the right direction of creating a better life for the people in Guatemala. The peace process for the Guatemalans, was one way to be able to reflect over their history, and start a debate and negotiate for brighter future, as their life mainly has been concentrated on a struggle between life and death. The forming of democracy in Guatemala is not an easy task. The government in Guatemala still have long way to improve the treatment of the impoverished population, and the countries recourses also has to be shared in a more equal way. It is still common that the police and the military use violence, especially against the indigenous population. The corruption within the military, police and the government is still a huge problem, as well as the increasing gap between the poor and the rich in the country. In reality, the political freedom is still closed for the major part of the population and the mobilisation is instead seen as a threat. Another conclusion is that the development in Guatemala and countries in the Third World mainly has been created and controlled by the First World, and in some perspectives especially the USA. I therefore think that the social, cultural, political and economical systems in Guatemala, as well as in many of the Third World countries in the world, are and have been permeated and chosen by more advanced countries in the First/western world. Even if the right to education today should be universal, the reality is something else. Some of the children actually become segregated, because of their socio-economic status. The lack of financial resources is usually the main problem, both within the poor indigenous families, as well as in some schools, i.e. they are not able to offer teaching materials to the children. This is only some of the problems that the children face every day. This is one of the reasons why children, especially the indigenous, still could be found on the streets or in the parks and not in school, because their families need money to buy food, or sometimes even drugs. However, this is just a snapshot of the situation on Guatemala. The poverty is always going to be an obstacle to improve the lives for the main population in Guatemala. Sport in the other hand, is always going to be important as a complement, especially in a life filled with poverty, conflicts and lots of other problems.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2002. , 50 p.
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-53316Local ID: KUG C-17OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-53316DiVA: diva2:1101869
Subject / course
Human Geography
Available from: 2017-05-29 Created: 2017-05-29

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