Tiffany Cain


I am an anthropologist using historical archaeology and ethnography to better understand the ways in whichthe legacies of the past, particularly violent conflict, form present day political consciousness and imaginations of the future. My current research based in Quintana Roo, Mexico seeks to push the limits of the pragmatic application of archaeological projects while thinking critically about the sociopolitics of heritage and its interplay with community development through community-organized participatory research.  This work is anchored by archaeological and archival investigations into the history of the Caste War of Yucatan or the Maya Social War (1847-1901), arguably the most successful indigenous rebellion in the Americas.


M.A. Anthropology, Stanford University B.A. with Honors, Archaeology, Stanford University

Research Interests

Cultural heritage and collective memory; archaeologies of violence and colonialism; race and indigeneity in Latin America; feminist anthropologies; materiality.

Cultural heritage ethics; intangible heritage; collective memory and social histories; indigenous and diasporic archaeologies; archaeology of colonialism; archaeologies of rebellion; landscape archaeology; race and gender; politics of recognition; reconciliation; historical anthropology; materiality; semiotics. Western Australia; Americas, currently Maya Yucatan. For more information or to connect:

Graduation Year



Dissertation Title

Materializing Political Violence: Segregation, War, & Memory in Quintana Roo, Mexico 

Graduate Status