The Maya: A Very Short Introduction

; Amara Solari

The Maya forged one of the greatest societies in the history of the ancient Americas - and in all of human history. Long before contact with Europeans, Maya communities built spectacular cities with large, well-fed large populations. Les mer
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Om boka

The Maya forged one of the greatest societies in the history of the ancient Americas - and in all of human history. Long before contact with Europeans, Maya communities built spectacular cities with large, well-fed large populations. They mastered the visual arts, and developed a sophisticated writing system that recorded extraordinary knowledge in calendrics, mathematics, and astronomy. The Maya achieved all this without area-wide centralized control. There
was never a single, unified Maya state or empire, but always numerous, evolving ethnic groups speaking dozens of distinct Mayan languages. The people we call "Maya" never thought of themselves as such; yet something definable, unique, and endlessly fascinating - what we call Maya culture - has clearly
existed for millennia. So what was their self-identity and how did Maya civilization come to be "invented?"

With the Maya historically subdivided and misunderstood in so many ways, the pursuit of what made them "the Maya" is all the more important. In this Very Short Introduction, Restall and Solari explore the themes of Maya identity, city-state political culture, art and architecture, the Maya concept of the cosmos, and the Maya experience of contact with - including invasion by - outsiders. Despite its brevity, this book is unique for its treatment of all periods of Maya
civilization, from its origins to the present.

Fakta

Innholdsfortegnelse

Chapter 1 Maya Genesis
Chapter 2 The Divine King
Chapter 3 The Writing Rabbit
Chapter 4 A Day in the Life
Chapter 5 Maya "Mysteries"
Chapter 6 Conquests
Chapter 7 Colonizations

Further Reading
Index

Om forfatteren

Matthew Restall is Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of History and Anthropology and Director of Latin American Studies at Penn State University. His books include The Maya World, Maya Conquistador, Seven Myths of the Spanish Conquest, The Black Middle, 2012 and the End of the World, The Conquistadors: A Very Short Introduction, and When Montezuma Met Cortes: The True Story of the Meeting Than Changed History.

Amara Solari is Professor of Art History and Anthropology at Penn State University. She is the co-author of 2012 and the End of the World: The Western Roots of the Maya Apocalypse, and author of Maya Ideologies of the Sacred: The Transfiguration of Space in Colonial Yucatan, and Idolizing Mary: Maya-Christian Icons in Early Modern Yucatan.