Just look at that volcano

At dawn the ants riseMarch to probe the dragon's backIt exhales fire, piqued We made the cover of VOLCANICA! Find the current issue, brimming with astonishing science, here (Vol. 3, No. 2). Our article, Fireside Tales, tells tales of past eruptions and evacuations at Fuego through interviews with local people. The cover photo was taken … Continue reading Just look at that volcano

Millenials Sí Hablan De Volcanes

La semana pasada me dió mucho gusto de asistir a un episodio de Millenials Sí Hablan de Política, una serie de podcast fundado por mis amigos y colegas Claudio Contreras Hidalgo y Eduardo Becerra. En este episodio platicamos juntos con Bárbara Ruiz y Christian Pizarro sobre el conocimiento de amenazas volcánicas y la divulgación de … Continue reading Millenials Sí Hablan De Volcanes

Fireside Tales

View of Volcán de Fuego from the terraces of Volcán Acatenango, Feb 2017

This blog post is a condensed version of a research article published on 7th October in VOLCANICA. You can find the full article here. It's fully open-access and free to download. Volcanoes present one of nature’s most spectacular sights and, while most of us would be hugely impressed by the breathtaking spectacle of the flames, … Continue reading Fireside Tales

Nine turning points: a writing exercise

Below is the “turning points” exercise I completed at a workshop I attended in April 2020, "Finding Your Voice As An Academic Writer". The point of the exercise is to rewrite an aspect of one's chosen subject through a series of "turning points", just like twists in a work of fiction. I study Volcán de … Continue reading Nine turning points: a writing exercise

Just Say No

I first thought of writing this post in late March. I was then in the thick of my research, and had just experienced a couple of examples of the phenomenon that I outline below. I imagine that what I write will feel familiar to others who have undertaken ethnographic research in less economically developed countries. … Continue reading Just Say No

Picture The Scene

Week Five was an incredibly long and dispiriting week, in which I hung around, failed to do interviews, and was generally hard on myself. I started to write a blog post about my largest bugbear, which was my continuing difficulty in communicating in Spanish to the level I’d like, and then – the post felt … Continue reading Picture The Scene

First impressions

It’s been a busy week! I am writing from my bunkbed in Fuego’s observatory, OVFGO1, in the village of Panimaché Uno (here). I am taking today (Friday 22nd February) off after conducting interviews between Monday and Thursday in the villages of Panimaché Uno, Panimaché Dos, Los Yucales, and Morelia. I am tired, but really stoked … Continue reading First impressions

A sense of scale

For my first blog post while in Guatemala this spring, I thought I would write about scales of time and distance. It’s something I think a lot about, especially because my research is split between two distant countries, and because 2.5 years into my PhD, I have rather more time to reflect on than to … Continue reading A sense of scale

Loma Linda

Guatemalan currency includes the one quetzal, that appears as either a crumpled green note or a round golden coin that flashes in the sun when new. A Q1 coin (approximately 10p) bears on one side the signature of the Accord of Firm and Lasting Peace, signed in Guatemala City on 29th December 1996 after three … Continue reading Loma Linda