Ashford University, from the USA, conducts research in Panama with PanamaTipico.com
Our fieldwork of the 2016 season started with the observation of the Sun Quartering at Parita, during Corpus Christi.
We also observed the creation of the flower carpets in the streets of the town.
Other documented activities were the Solemn Mass and Procession around the Colonial Square.
Our research included a number of interviews with organizers and participants of the festival.
Eating street food is an important component of the cultural immersion needed for understanding aspects of the celebration.
Also, we visited a mask crafter involved in the creation of the festival dancers' attire.
With the observation of the Folk Dance Parade, we closed our fieldwork with Ashford University for the 2016 season.
Again, in 2017, researchers from Ashford University joined us in Panama. This time, the goal was to study the Patron Saint Festivity of Santo Domingo de Las Tablas.
This time, we observed the Procession through the main streets of the town.
Also, the team of researchers attended the traditional serenade in honor of Santo Domingo.
Work not only includes attending traditional activities, but also interpreting and organizing the obtained information.
For understanding the tourism aspect of the project, we visited some pollera makers at Santo Domingo.
The traditional bullfights, as part of the popular festivity, where also subject of observation.
As in the previous year, the interview of locals was an important component of the fieldwork.
An important part of the international academic reach of PanamaTipico.com is our participation in scientific conferences and joint research project centered around cultural heritage.
In that respect, one of our most important collaborative projects is the multiyear, currently 2016-2017, research agreement with the Anthropology Department of Ashford University, a higher learning institution based in California, USA.This project involves the study of traditional celebrations held in Panama such as the Corpus Christi of Parita and the Patron Saint Festivity of Santo Domingo de Las Tablas.
Usually, the research process involves several stages. First, our Director organizes the local logistics and establishes contact with key people on each town. At the same time, the USA-based team works on the research design. Then, anthropologists from Ashford University arrive in Panama for observing the festival, interviewing organizers and participants and doing the audiovisual documentation of the folk activities. Next, after fieldwork is over, both teams in the USA and Panama conduct the analysis of the information and the preparation of papers to be submitted to scientific conferences and journals.
The results of this project will be shared with local communities. In fact, this process has already started in the case of Parita. Additionally, part of the generated content will reinforce the related articles already published at PanamaTipico.com. We thank the people of Parita and Santo Domingo for their help and welcome. We hope to reach other towns in the near future.