The Ancient Maya: New Perspectives

The Ancient Maya: New Perspectives

4.5 2
by Heather McKillop
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0393328902

ISBN-13: 9780393328905

Pub. Date: 07/17/2006

Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.

"Comprehensive…clearly written…Highly recommended."—Choice
Temples lost in the rainforest. Strange inscriptions and ritual bloodletting. Such are the images popularly associated with the ancient Maya of Central America. But who really were the people of this lost civilization? How and why did their culture achieve regional dominance? Could

Overview

"Comprehensive…clearly written…Highly recommended."—Choice
Temples lost in the rainforest. Strange inscriptions and ritual bloodletting. Such are the images popularly associated with the ancient Maya of Central America. But who really were the people of this lost civilization? How and why did their culture achieve regional dominance? Could such pressing contemporary problems as climate change and environmental degradation hold the key to the collapse of Maya civilization?
Of interest to scholars and general readers alike, The Ancient Maya brings the controversies that have divided experts on the ancient Maya to a wider audience. Heather McKillop examines the debates concerning Mayan hieroglyphs, the Maya economy, and the conflicting theories behind the enigmatic collapse of the Maya civilization. The most readable and accessible work in the field, this book brings the general reader up to date with the latest archaeological evidence.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393328905
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
07/17/2006
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
460
Product dimensions:
7.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 1.30(d)

Table of Contents

List of Mapsxi
Series Editor's Prefacexiii
Prefacexv
Acknowledgmentsxvii
Part 1Introduction
Chapter 1Introduction3
Overview of Maya Civilization7
Sources of Information on the Maya14
Part 2Maya Civilization
Chapter 2Location of Maya Area and Environmental Setting29
General Natural and Cultural Subdivisions29
Modern Environmental Changes36
Chapter 3Historical and Chronological Setting41
History of Research41
Chronology of the Maya59
Creation Myth62
Ethnohistoric Accounts63
Chapter 4Origins, Growth, and Decline of the Maya Civilization71
Pre-Maya People: The Paleoindians72
Small Game Hunters of the Archaic75
The Early Preclassic Period77
The Earliest Maya on the Pacific Coast77
Middle Preclassic Expansion of Village Farming78
Antecedents to the Classic Maya Civilization: Olmec and Izapa80
The Origins of Maya Civilization88
Classic Maya Civilization90
The Terminal Classic Florescence in the Northern Maya Lowlands (A.D. 800-1000)100
Chichen Itza102
Mayapan and the Late Postclassic Maya104
The Spanish Conquest105
Chapter 5Economics114
Maya Workshops and Craft Production119
Household Production122
Classic Maya Workshops123
Craft Production for Maya Royalty126
Systems of Subsistence127
Maya Trade130
Summary141
Chapter 6Social Organization and Social Structure150
Settlement Patterns150
Community Patterns150
Regional Settlement Patterns154
Pan-Lowland Settlement Patterns155
Marriage and the Family155
Social Stratification159
Population Estimates162
Ancient Maya Demography167
Population Data for the Maya Lowlands169
Chapter 7Politics175
Political Structure176
The Preclassic Origins of Maya Kingship181
Politics and the Development of Kingship in the Early Classic Period182
Teotihuacan "Influence"182
Late Classic Politics and Warfare186
Warfare188
Political Geography196
Chapter 8Religion and Ideology204
Maya Ideology: The Popol Vuh206
Cosmology213
The Ball Game213
Pantheon of Gods, Goddesses, and Other Supernatural Beings217
Rituals221
Evidence223
Chapter 9Material Culture229
Natural Resources229
Architecture and Urban Planning233
Maya Pottery243
Stone Tools and Other Artifacts247
Food Plants251
Minerals252
Mural Painting252
Sculpture256
Paper Books258
Metalwork: Gold and Copper259
Wooden Artifacts260
Bone and Shell Artifacts261
Food Animals262
Death263
Chapter 10Intellectual Accomplishments276
Mathematics276
Calendars277
Astronomy282
Astronomy and Maya Architecture287
Language and Writing288
Sample Maya Text with Translation297
Part 3Current Assessments
Chapter 11Major Controversies and Future Directions in the Study of the Maya Civilization307
The Classic Maya Collapse307
City-State, Empire, or Chiefdom313
Feeding the Masses316
Illegal Trade in Maya Antiquities316
Future Directions in Maya Archaeology318
Glossary323
Chronology343
Resources for Further Study355
Index423
About the Author453

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The Ancient Maya: New Perspectives 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
NSALegal More than 1 year ago
The book lends itself slightly better to use as a reference than reading straight through (with much repetition of concepts and ideas across the subject areas), but was thought-provoking. The author does a good job at fairly presenting different hypotheses, as there are still many gaps in knowledge, both as of the date of publishing and currently. There were only a few misspellings that distracted (heiroglyphics for hieroglyphics was the worst offender).
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thought this was an excellent book. I bought it to read for a research project. It has a lot of useful informations. I would recommend anyone to read this. I thought it was really interesting.