ancestral maya economies in archaeological perspective

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Ancestral Maya Economies In Archaeological Perspective

Author : Patricia A. McAnany
ISBN : 0521895189
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 41. 56 MB
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The decipherment of Maya hieroglyphs has enabled scholars to better understand Classic society, but many aspects of this civilization remain shrouded in mystery, particularly its economies and social structures. How did farmers, artisans, and rulers make a living in a tropical forest environment? In this study, Patricia McAnany tackles this question and presents the first comprehensive view of ancestral Maya economic practice. Bringing an archaeological approach to the topic, she demonstrates the vital role of ritual practice in indigenous ecologies, gendered labor, and the construction of colossal architecture. Examining Maya royalty as a kind of social speciation, McAnany also shows the fundamentality of social difference as well as the pervasiveness of artisan production and marketplaces in ancestral Maya societies. Her analysis of royal iconography and hieroglyphic texts provides evidence of a political economy dominated by tribute extraction, thus lifting the veil of opacity over the operation of palace economies. Written in an engaging and accessible style, this book situates Maya economies within contemporary social, political, and economic theories of social practice, gender, actor-networks, inalienable goods, materiality, social difference, indigenous ecologies, and strategies of state finance.

Ancient Maya Commerce

Author : Scott R. Hutson
ISBN : 9781607325550
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 89. 83 MB
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Ancient Maya Commerce presents nearly two decades of multidisciplinary research at Chunchucmil, Yucatan, Mexico—a thriving Classic period Maya center organized around commercial exchange rather than agriculture. An urban center without a king and unable to sustain agrarian independence, Chunchucmil is a rare example of a Maya city in which economics, not political rituals, served as the engine of growth. Trade was the raison d’être of the city itself. Using a variety of evidence—archaeological, botanical, geomorphological, and soil-based—contributors show how the city was a major center for both short- and long-distance trade, integrating the Guatemalan highlands, the Gulf of Mexico, and the interior of the northern Maya lowlands. By placing Chunchucmil into the broader context of emerging research at other Maya cities, the book reorients the understanding of ancient Maya economies. The book is accompanied by a highly detailed digital map that reveals the dense population of the city and the hundreds of streets its inhabitants constructed to make the city navigable, shifting the knowledge of urbanism among the ancient Maya. Ancient Maya Commerce is a pioneering, thoroughly documented case study of a premodern market center and makes a strong case for the importance of early market economies in the Maya region. It will be a valuable addition to the literature for Mayanists, Mesoamericanists, economic anthropologists, and environmental archaeologists. Contributors: Anthony P. Andrews, Traci Ardren, Sheryl Luzzadder-Beach, Timothy Beach, Chelsea Blackmore, Tara Bond-Freeman, Bruce H. Dahlin, Patrice Farrell, David Hixson, Socorro Jimenez, Justin Lowry, Aline Magnoni, Eugenia Mansell, Daniel E. Mazeau, Travis Stanton, Ryan V. Sweetwood, Richard E. Terry

Maya Figurines

Author : Christina T. Halperin
ISBN : 9780292709874
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 25. 42 MB
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Rather than view the contours of Late Classic Maya social life solely from towering temple pyramids or elite sculptural forms, this book considers a suite of small anthropomorphic, zoomorphic, and supernatural figurative remains excavated from household refuse deposits. Maya Figurines examines these often neglected objects and uses them to draw out relationships between the Maya state and its subjects. These figurines provide a unique perspective for understanding Maya social and political relations; Christina T. Halperin argues that state politics work on the microscale of everyday routines, localized rituals, and small-scale representations. Her comprehensive study brings together archeology, anthropology, and art history with theories of material culture, performance, political economy, ritual humor, and mimesis to make a fascinating case for the role politics plays in daily life. What she finds is that, by comparing small-scale figurines with state-sponsored, often large-scale iconography and elite material culture, one can understand how different social realms relate to and represent one another. In Maya Figurines, Halperin compares objects from diverse households, archeological sites, and regions, focusing especially on figurines from Petén, Guatemala, and comparing them to material culture from Belize, the northern highlands of Guatemala, the Usumacinta River, the Campeche coastal area, and Mesoamerican sites outside the Maya zone. Ultimately, she argues, ordinary objects are not simply passive backdrops for important social and political phenomena. Instead, they function as significant mechanisms through which power and social life are intertwined.

The Ancient Maya Marketplace

Author : Eleanor M. King
ISBN : 9780816500413
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 56. 40 MB
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"The Ancient Maya Marketplace, edited by Eleanor M. King, reviews the debate on prehispanic Maya markets. The volume's contributors challenge the model of a non-commercialized Maya economy and offer compelling new evidence for the existence and identification of ancient marketplaces among the Maya"--Provided by publisher.

Gendered Labor In Specialized Economies

Author : Sophia E. Kelly
ISBN : 9781607324836
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 72. 43 MB
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Prehistoric economic relationships are often presented as genderless, yet mounting research highlights the critical role gendered identities play in the division of work tasks and the development of specialized production in pre-modern economic systems. In Gendered Labor in Specialized Economies, contributors combine the study of gender in the archaeological record with the examination of intensified craft production in prehistory to reassess the connection between craft specialization and the types and amount of work that men and women performed in ancient communities. Chapters are organized by four interrelated themes crucial for understanding the implications of gender in the organization of craft production: craft specialization and the political economy, combined effort in specialized production, the organization of female and male specialists, and flexibility and rigidity in the gendered division of labor. Contributors consider how changes to the gendered division of labor in craft manufacture altered other types of production or resulted from modifications in the organization of production elsewhere in the economic system. Striking a balance between theoretical and methodological approaches and presenting case studies from sites around the world, Gendered Labor in Specialized Economies offers a guide to the major issues that will frame future research on how men’s and women’s work changes, predisposes, and structures the course of economic development in various societies. Contributors: Alejandra Alonso Olvera, Traci Ardren, Michael G. Callaghan, Nigel Chang, Cathy Lynne Costin, Pilar Margarita Hernández Escontrías, A. Halliwell, Sue Harrington, James M. Heidke, Sophia E. Kelly, Brigitte Kovacevich, T. Kam Manahan, Ann Brower Stahl, Laura Swantek, Rita Wright, Andrea Yankowski

The Value Of Things

Author : Jennifer P. Mathews
ISBN : 9780816536320
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 80. 31 MB
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Jade, stone tools, honey and wax, ceramics, rum, land. What gave these commodities value in the Maya world, and how were those values determined? What factors influenced the rise and fall of a commodity’s value? The Value of Things examines the social and ritual value of commodities in Mesoamerica, providing a new and dynamic temporal view of the roles of trade of commodities and elite goods from the prehistoric Maya to the present. Editors Jennifer P. Mathews and Thomas H. Guderjan begin the volume with a review of the theoretical literature related to the “value of things.” Throughout the volume, well-known scholars offer chapters that examine the value of specific commodities in a broad time frame—from prehistoric, colonial, and historic times to the present. Using cases from the Maya world on both the local level and the macro-regional, contributors look at jade, agricultural products (ancient and contemporary), stone tools, salt, cacao (chocolate), honey and wax, henequen, sugarcane and rum, land, ceramic (ancient and contemporary), and contemporary tourist handicrafts. Each chapter author looks into what made their specific commodity valuable to ancient, historic, and contemporary peoples in the Maya region. Often a commodity’s worth goes far beyond its financial value; indeed, in some cases, it may not even be viewed as something that can be sold. Other themes include the rise and fall in commodity values based on perceived need, rarity or overproduction, and change in available raw materials; the domestic labor side of commodities, including daily life of the laborers; and relationships between elites and nonelites in production. Examining, explaining, and theorizing how people ascribe value to what they trade, this scholarly volume provides a rich look at local and regional Maya case studies through centuries of time. Contributors: Rani T. Alexander Dean E. Arnold Timothy Beach Briana Bianco Steven Bozarth Tiffany C. Cain Scott L. Fedick Thomas H. Guderjan John Gust Eleanor Harrison-Buck Brigitte Kovacevich Samantha Krause Joshua J. Kwoka Richard M. Leventhal Sheryl Luzzadder-Beach Jennifer P. Mathews Heather McKillop Allan D. Meyers Gary Rayson Mary Katherine Scott E. Cory Sills

Social Identities In The Classic Maya Northern Lowlands

Author : Traci Ardren
ISBN : 9780292768116
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 65. 79 MB
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Social Identities in the Classic Maya Northern Lowlands plumbs the archaeological record for what it can reveal about the creation of personal and communal identities in the Maya world. Using new primary data from her excavations at the sites of Yaxuna, Chunchucmil, and Xuenkal, and new analysis of data from Dzibilchaltun in Yucatan, Mexico, Traci Ardren presents a series of case studies in how social identities were created, shared, and manipulated among the lowland Maya. Ardren argues that the interacting factors of gender, age, familial and community memories, and the experience of living in an urban setting were some of the key aspects of Maya identities. She demonstrates that domestic and civic spaces were shaped by gender-specific behaviors to communicate and reinforce gendered ideals. Ardren discusses how child burials disclose a sustained pattern of reverence for the potential of childhood and the power of certain children to mediate ancestral power. She shows how small shrines built a century after Yaxuna was largely abandoned indicate that its remaining residents used memory to reenvision their city during a time of cultural reinvention. And Ardren explains how Chunchucmil's physical layout of houses, plazas, and surrounding environment denotes that its occupants shared an urban identity centered in the movement of trade goods and economic exchange. Viewing this evidence through the lens of the social imaginary and other recent social theory, Ardren demonstrates that material culture and its circulations are an integral part of the discourse about social identity and group membership.

Living With The Ancestors

Author : Patricia A. McAnany
ISBN : 9780521719353
Genre : History
File Size : 20. 9 MB
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Contains an entirely new introduction that synthesizes scholarship on practices of ancestral veneration that has emerged since the 1995 publication of the first edition.

Textile Economies

Author : Walter E. Little
ISBN : 9780759120631
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 73. 18 MB
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The economy of textiles provides insight into the fabric of social relations, local and global politics, and diverse ideologies. Textile production and exchange represent a key node for the intersections of multiple aspects of ancient and modern economies, including social-class relations, gender, tourism, exchange, commerce, and transpolity relationships. A political economy of textiles, discussed from a broad interdisciplinary perspective, offers ways to understand cloth and clothing as parts of mutually constitutive processes that shape and reflect economic practices, cultural ideologies, and sociopolitical rank.

Ancient Maya Political Economies

Author : Marilyn A. Masson
ISBN : 0759100802
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 88. 56 MB
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Ancient Maya Political Economies examines variation in systems of economic production and exchange and how these systems supported the power networks that integrated Maya society. Using models originally developed by William L. Rathje, the authors explore core-periphery relations, the use of household analysis to reconstruct political economy, and evidence for market development. In doing so, they challenge the conventional wisdom of decentralized Maya political authority and replace it with a more complex view of the political economic foundations of Maya civilization.

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