July 20, 2010


This is one of my favorite photographs that I have taken at Monte Alban in Oaxaca. Sometimes, it's the details that I find really interesting in a photograph.* Sure, the archaeological structure is definitely impressive, as is the scope of this site. But what I really like about this picture had a more contemporary provenance:

I think that the little path in this picture is extremely interesting, since it's the result of who knows how many people walking through this site. I wonder if the path is made and remade every year before and after the rainy season. The fascinating thing is that this is a line that is made out of collective behaviors and habits--and there are some small details that stand out to me. One really obvious aspect of this path is the distance from the structure...notice how there is enough space to look at it without getting subsumed by the walls. Practical, yes. But it also reflects certain collective decisions and predilections, right? Maybe. Or maybe it just reflects the path where tour guides generally take groups--and where everyone else decides to follow. Next time I'll pay more attention while I'm actually there...

*I also like the fact that there is one tiny little person standing on the top of the structure at the other end of the plaza.

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