The Maya and Conscious Capitalism: Indigenous American Integration, Neutralism, and Resistance

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Mackey and Sisodia have put forward that capitalism can be more than just about the bottom line. Their ideas mostly pertain to the industrialized world; however, how, then, does their best business model, as aligned with their higher purpose guiding principles align, or not, with their goal of being “in harmony with nature”? Is conscious capitalism applicable to Indigenous peoples as created and managed by native cultural practices? Mackey and Sisodia strive for business to be in harmony with nature and this seems partly derived from Indigenous practice; however, indigeneity driven trade, stemming from traditional values, vary somewhat from conscious capitalism characteristics. Is conscious capitalism an oxymoron if applied to the Mesoamerican Maya? The Maya have interacted and engaged in trade with their neighbors for centuries. Indigenous Americans used to trade long distances with each other from North America to South America until European colonizers disrupted their freedom to do so. Having a millennia old cosmological tradition that engages their ecology within acts of reciprocation, the Maya feel that they can have a harmonic balance with people and their environment and this appears to be an Indigenous model reflecting a type of conscious capitalism. The Maya engage in trade extending outward from their village communities and this chapter seeks an approach to better contextualize and comprehend indigeneity articulated enterprising ventures by asking whether it is contradictory for Maya entrepreneurs to integrate themselves within conscious capitalistic endeavors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEthical Economy
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media B.V.
Number of pages23
StatePublished - 2022

Publication series

NameEthical Economy
ISSN (Print)2211-2707
ISSN (Electronic)2211-2723


  • Conscious Capitalism
  • Indigenous
  • Maya
  • Mesoamerica
  • Pre-Capitalism
  • World-system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics and Econometrics


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