Spiritual leaders perform a maya ritual inside the naj tunich (stone house in mayan language) caves in the municipality of poptun, peten, north of guatemala city. Increasing numbers of mayans of varying social classes live in all of guatemala's cities, as well as in belize, honduras and especially mexico mayan groups are distinguished by language the most common of the approximately 26 indigenous mayan languages that are still spoken are q'eqchi', cakchiquel, mam (maya), tzutujil, achi and pokoman. Maya culture permeates contemporary guatemala, where two dozen maya languages are spoken by more than 4 million people native traditions, such as agriculture, weaving and the count of days in the maya calendar, have survived the influence of spanish culture, missionaries, radio, television, and, most recently, globalization and the internet. Guatemala formally referred to as the republic of guatemala is a nation located in central america mexico borders it to the west and north, caribbean to the northeast, the pacific ocean to the southwest, honduras and caribbean to the east, and el salvador to the southeast.
The colonizers of mexico forced the spanish language on the natives, but in the 1990s the government recognized 62 indigenous amerindian languages, including aztec, or nahuatl, and the mayan family of languages, as national languages. The mayan languages form a language family spoken in mesoamerica and northern central americamayan languages are spoken by at least 6 million maya peoples, primarily in guatemala, mexico, belize and honduras. During a guatemala trip you may hear up to twenty-one distinct mayan languages are spoken, especially in rural areas in addition, there are several non-mayan amerindian languages, such as the indigenous xinca, and garifuna, an arawakan language spoken on the caribbean coast.
The maya civilization flourished in guatemala and surrounding regions during the first millennium ad after almost three centuries as a spanish colony, guatemala won its independence in 1821 during the second half of the 20th century, it experienced a variety of military and civilian governments, as well as a 36-year guerrilla war. Wanted: speakers of mayan languages, code switch as immigration to the us shifts from mexico to central america, more mayan speakers a map of the many mayan languages spoken in guatemala. Mayan is considered an official language in mexico, together with other 67 native languages and spanish but 96% of the population speaks spanish fluently so this is de facto language, and less than 8% can speak a native american language.
Of indigenous languages in many areas of the world guatemala and mexico are no exception although language change and language death are not new phenomena, the 20 th century saw the decline in native speakers of the majority of mayan languages due to processes of language shift. The pro-language movement aspires to expand the domains of usage of mayan languages in order to prevent language shift and loss, to increase literary production in and about mayan languages, to prepare mayas for more technically advanced work in terms of language preservation. The republic of guatemala is a central american country that borders several other south american states including, honduras, el salvador, belize, and mexico. There is a significant amount of confusion as to the correct terminology to use—maya or mayan—and the meaning of these words with reference to contemporary or pre-columbian peoples, to maya peoples in different parts of mexico, guatemala, belize, and to languages or peoples.
In guatemala, there are 21 known mayan languages, and there are eight more in mexico it is believed that most modern mayan languages are derived from a 5000-year old language known as proto-mayan, the old maya language. While k'iche' is her native language, ana also speaks some kaqchickel kaqchickel is still spoken by approximately 500,000 people in the guatemalan highlands.
In the 1985 guatemala constitution, article 66 recognized mayan peoples and were provided their right to speak their native languages, wear their traditional dresses, practice their customs and implement their social organizations. Mayan languages mayan language had many dialects - qhuche, cakchiquel, kekchi, and mam - is still spoken by about 300,000 persons, of whom two-thirds are pure maya, the remainder being whites and of mixed blood are still spoken today, although the majority of indians also speak spanish. These languages are thought to have originated from a common ancestral language called proto-mayan which was spoken at least 5,000 years ago by inhabitants of the mayan empire whose remains can be found throughout much of guatemala,belize, honduras, el salvador and southern mexico.