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Cultural Energy and Grassroots Development

"Culture is like a tree," says Mariano Lopez, a Tzotzil Indian leader from the municipality of Chamula in Chiapas, Mexico. "If the green branches—people's language, legends, and customs—are carelessly lopped off, then the roots that bind people to their place on the earth and to each other also begin to wither. The wind and rain and the elements carry the topsoil away; the land becomes a desert."

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