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Documentary Educational Resources (Watertown, MA 02472-1640)
David Lebrun (Project Director: August 2009 to March 2012)
The Royal Cup

Development of an hour-long documentary film on ancient Maya pottery and the ethics of studying and collecting objects that may have been looted.

Over the past forty years, thousands of exquisitely painted ancient Maya ceramics have flooded into the world's public and private collections. Previously rare and little known, these vessels have transformed Maya studies. Their images and texts have opened windows onto Maya life, history, ritual, literature and mythology. But because most of these vessels came to light by looting, they also raise profound practical and ethical questions. The Royal Cup will tell this story and explore the issues it raises through a one-hour television program; a nationwide outreach program of screenings, discussions and workshops; a multi-faceted website and ancillary outputs and materials.

Project fields:

America's Media Makers: Development Grants

Public Programs

$50,000 (approved)
$50,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2010 – 12/31/2010