The Postclassic to Spanish-Era Transition in Mesoamerica: Archaeological Perspectives

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In this volume, thirteen anthropological archaeologists working in historical time frames in Mesoamerica, including editors Susan Kepecs and Rani Alexander, break down the artificial barrier between archaeology and history by offering new material evidence of the transition from native-ruled, prehispanic society to the age of Spanish administration. Taken together, the chapters contained herein cover most of the key Mesoamerican regions that eventually came under Spanish control.

The authors bring new empirical information to bear on the problem of how prehispanic social, political, and economic organization were transformed, as independent Maya kingdoms, the Aztec empire (with its client states), the Tarascans, and other more distant polities once linked through the macroregional economic web of the Postclassic period were forcibly incorporated into Spain's transatlantic domain. The complex processes of multidirectional interaction and culture contact among Mesoamericans and Europeans are colored by cultural diversity, culture clash, and varied responses ranging from accommodation to resistance to active rebellion. These case studies also illuminate how native organization altered the Spanish imperial process. Ultimately, this volume provides a link between past and present, since Mesoamerican peoples continue to negotiate the effects of globalization on their societies. Susan Kepecs is an honorary fellow in the department of anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Rani T. Alexander is an associate professor in the department of sociology and anthropology at New Mexico State University, Las Cruces.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826337399
  • Publisher: University of New Mexico Press
  • Publication date: 12/28/2005
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 8.22 (w) x 10.24 (h) x 1.01 (d)

Meet the Author

Susan Kepecs is an honorary fellow in the department of anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Rani T. Alexander is an associate professor in the department of sociology and anthropology at New Mexico State University, Las Cruces.

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Table of Contents

1 The postclassic to Spanish-era transition in Mesoamerica : an introduction 1
2 The Aztec palace under Spanish rule : disk motifs in the Mapa de Mexico de 1550 (Uppsala Map or Mapa de Santa Cruz) 13
3 Consumption and the varied ideologies of domination in colonial Mexico City 35
4 The basin of Mexico A.D. 1450-1620 : archaeological dimensions 49
5 From imperial core to colonial periphery : the lake Patzcuaro basin 1400-1800 65
6 The consequences of Spanish colonial rule for the indigenous peoples of Chiapas, Mexico 77
7 On the margins of peripheries : the consequences of differential incorporation in the colonial southwest 97
8 Mayas, spaniards, and salt : world systems shifts in sixteenth-century Yucatan 117
9 Sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Maya political geography in Central Peten, Guatemala 139
10 Isla Cilvituk and the difficulties of Spanish colonization in Southwestern Campeche 161
11 Postcolonial conquest of the Southern Maya Lowlands, cross-cultural interaction, and Lacandon Maya culture change 183
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