Saul Bautista is a Senior at Eastern Washington University majoring in History. He earned his AA degree at Spokane Falls Community College. He is currently studying the historical socio-political climate of Latinoamerica’s diverse cultures. For his research project in the summer of 2022, he worked under the mentorship of Dr. Joseph Lenti to do deep research on the history of the multiple governments of Central America, focusing on how the educational system of Honduras actively tries to undermine the presence of the native Americans in the history of the country, and the treatment of the indigenous people in the region by the Honduran government. This research project has prepared Saul for graduate level work. He plans to obtain a PhD in History.
2022 EWU Faculty Research Mentor: Dr. Joseph Lenti
Research Title: El Indio Desplasado: The Systematic Displacement of Native People in Honduran History
Abstract: This research project assesses the problematic way in which the public education system of Honduras has historically depicted Indigenous peoples of the nation. Most importantly, it demonstrates that the Honduran government, through public education textbooks, has actively perpetuated the idea that native peoples are gone – that they are but another page in the books of history. The goal of this investigation is to understand how this form of misinformation has succeeded to influence generations of Hondurans and caused them to largely believe that indigenous people are not active participants in that society today.
This research project contends that an intentional and active campaign to minimize the historical significance of indigenous peoples in Honduras has popularly minimized the importance of the local tribes in the national history. Moreover, this research highlights how the historical minimizing of the indigenous presence in Honduras contributes to contemporary discrimination and repression toward native people.
This research project uses public education textbooks produced by the Ministry of Education. Additionally, this study incorporates into its analysis oral interviews with educators and scholars including an anthropologist who has worked and interacted with local tribes in Honduras. And lastly, secondary sources are reviewed to bolster this project’s conclusions.