The contributors to this volume present extensive new evidence from archaeology, iconography, and epigraphy to offer a more nuanced understanding of the interaction between the Early Classic Maya and Teotihuacan.
Since the 1930s, archaeologists have uncovered startling evidence of interaction between the Early Classic Maya and the great empire of Teotihuacan in Central Mexico. Yet the exact nature of the relationship between these two ancient Mesoamerican civilizations remains to be fully deciphered. Many scholars have assumed that Teotihuacan colonized the Maya region and dominated the political or economic systems of certain key centers—perhaps even giving rise to state-level political organizations. Others argue that Early Classic rulers merely traded with Teotihuacan and skillfully manipulated its imported exotic goods and symbol sets to increase their prestige.
Moving beyond these traditional assumptions, the contributors to this volume present extensive new evidence from archaeology, iconography, and epigraphy to offer a more nuanced understanding of the interaction between the Early Classic Maya and Teotihuacan. Investigating a range of Maya sites, including Kaminaljuyu, Copán, Tikal, Altun Ha, and Oxkintok, they demonstrate that the influence of Teotihuacan on the Maya varied in nature and duration from site to site, requiring a range of models to explain the patterns of interaction. Moreover, they show that the interaction was bidirectional and discuss how the Maya in turn influenced Teotihuacan.
A Choice Outstanding Academic Book
- Figure List
- Foreword (Arthur A. Demarest)
- 1. Introduction: Reinterpreting Early Classic Interaction (Geoffrey E. Braswell)
- 2. Teotihuacan, Militarism, and Pacific Guatemala (Frederick J. Bove and Sonia Medrano Busto)
- 3. Dating Early Classic Interaction between Kaminaljuyu and Central Mexico (Geoffrey E. Braswell)
- 4. Understanding Early Classic Interaction between Kaminaljuyu and Central Mexico (Geoffrey E. Braswell)
- 5. Founding Events and Teotihuacan Connections at Copán, Honduras (Robert J. Sharer)
- 6. Problematical Deposits and the Problem of Interaction: The Material Culture of Tikal during the Early Classic Period (María Josefa Iglesias Ponce de León)
- 7. Architectural Aspects of Interaction between Tikal and Teotihuacan during the Early Classic Period (Juan Pedro Laporte)
- 8. Images of Power and the Power of Images: Early Classic Iconographic Programs of the Carved Monuments of Tikal (James Borowicz)
- 9. Teotihuacan at Altun Ha: Did It Make a Difference? (David M. Pendergast)
- 10. Teotihuacan and Oxkintok: New Perspectives from Yucatán (Carmen Varela Torrecilla and Geoffrey E. Braswell)
- 11. Tetitla and the Maya Presence at Teotihuacan (Karl A. Taube)
- 12. Teotihuacan and Early Classic Interaction: A Perspective from Outside the Maya Region (George L. Cowgill)
- 13. The Maya and Teotihuacan (Joyce Marcus)
“I can say unequivocally that this volume will become a basic and heavily used reference and source of ideas. . . . Geoff Braswell is to be commended for bringing together so solid, comprehensive, pertinent, and balanced a compilation of research and thought on this topic as is represented by this collection.”
Joseph W. Ball, Professor of Anthropology and Archaeology, San Diego State University