A Seminar organized by the Ambassadors of the Sea Community Diving Center, the Institute of Citizen Sciences of the Sea (INMAR CARIBE), the Festival of the Sea, and the international Institute of Archaeomythology*,
will be held on June 3-6, 2024 in Cahuita, Talamanca, Limón, Costa Rica.

This event encourages dialogue about people’s traditional lifeways in Talamanca and in other national and international cultural regions relevant to the interdisciplinary approach of archaeomythology. The discipline of archaeomythology was created by the Lithuanian North American archaeologist Dr. Marija Gimbutas (1921-1994) and is continued by the Institute of Archaeomythology based in California, USA, under the direction of Dr. Joan Marler. Archaeomythology was created to expand the interpretive boundaries of archaeology to incorporate the study of beliefs, rituals, symbolic imagery, and cultural objects created in antiquity, not only in their utilitarian and economic contexts, but as expressions of social and mythological functions reflecting people’s ancestral systems of meaning.

The Seminar we are organizing will consist of panels, presentations, dialogues, debates, and field visits demonstrating ancestral food production and ground visit to archaeological sites in the Cahuita National Park. Other cultural activities will investigate approaches and conceptualizations related to archaeomythology in terms of explorations of ancestral sources of knowledge. In Talamanca, this process is called “citizenship science.”

Ambassadors of the Sea will present a praxis of the integrality of forms of knowledge with which Afro and Afro mestizo Bribri youths with a handful of adult divers have opened. They have initiated a community cultural stewardship process capable of finding and verifying a hidden history at the bottom of the sea. This process makes visible a chapter in the history of slavery, and in so doing, it reconnects broken fabrics of our national and personal identities.

This recovered history is connected with the ancestral roots, myths, and current struggles of the Afro-descendant population, and with the Bribri, Cabécar and Nobe, that affirms their identities and their history of shared resistance of colonialism that dissociated them from their cultural inheritance.

Two panels discussing ancestral knowledge of our native peoples of Talamanca and other latitudes have been organized. One will present experiences and visions of Bribri, Cabécar, Nobe, and mestizo women about their cultural contributions. Another panel of Afro and mestizo women will present their experiences, founding stories, and visions.

A third panel will feature discussions by the director of Ambassadors of the Sea of ​​the Community Diving Center (CCBEM), the director of the National Museum of Costa Rica, the Resident Expeditionary Communicator of National Geographic, a philosopher from the National University of Heredia in Costa Rica, and the director of the Institute of Archaeomythology. The representative of the Cultural Program of UNESCO’s Central American Office will also be featured. 

Two field visits will be offered one of Afro ancestral production in Playa Grande de Cahuita and another consisting of a ground tour to archaeological sites in PNC. Artistic presentations of poetry, singing, and visual arts including the Casa Cultura Calypso Collection and EXPO will further enrich the program.

Invited guests to the Seminar are welcome to participate in their own ways, whether by sponsoring, presenting, or taking part in other activities. Their interactive contributions have the potential to express and expand cultural knowledge relevant to the deepening expressions of pluriculturality and multiethnicity recognized in the Constitution of Costa Rica of 2014. 

There is a great need for qualitative advances in new levels of recognition of multicultural knowledge and honoring of ancestral roots as encouraged by Archaeomythology and preserved in multiple ways by traditional societies in Costa Rica and in various regions of Latin America.