By Antonia E. Foias
"An notable evaluate of contemporary scholarship coupled with the result of a long term study venture on the web site and sector of Motul de San José. It contributes considerably to the anthropological literature on politics and power." --Daniela Triadan, coeditor of Burned Palaces and Elite apartments of Aguateca
"A lengthy past due and especially welcome piece of scholarly paintings. It synthesizes, digests, and makes on hand the result of the great growth in political reviews within the Maya zone that has happened within the final 20 years because of quick glyph decipherment, elevated archaeological facts, and extra subtle theoretical modeling." --Eleanor M. King, Howard University
The learn of politics, a dominating strength all through heritage, supplies nice perception into the lives of historical humans. as a result of richness and complexity of Maya society, archaeologists and anthropologists have spent many years trying to reconstruct its political systems.
In Ancient Maya Political Dynamics, Antonia Foias argues that there's no unmarried Maya political historical past yet a number of histories, no unmarried Maya country yet a number of polities that must be understood on the point of the lived, person adventure. She explores the ways that the dynamics of political strength formed the lives and panorama of the Maya and the way this data can be utilized to examine different advanced societies.
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Additional info for Ancient Maya Political Dynamics
Political rituals that relate the local to the national or to the larger polity are critical in the evolution of larger complex societies: “Identification of the local with the national can take place only through the use of symbols that identify the one with the other” (Kertzer 1988, 21). Among such rituals, we find rites of allegiance, the construction of local monuments that symbolize the larger polity, and rituals of royal procession (21–23). Kertzer writes that political reality is constructed by and through these rituals, engendering both change and stability: “The struggle to elicit political support thus involves the struggle to establish one schema [that of the political elite] as the appropriate one for interpreting experience” (81– 82).
Scholars are interested in establishing the foundations of political power, whether the source is material or ideational or both. ). Elites can attempt to control land, natural resources, or food sources of particular importance for production or exchange, or the means of production. The decision of which resources to control varies among different societies, depending on a number of factors, and archaeologists can reconstruct material sources of power by recognizing which economic pursuits elites are intervening in as reflected in the productive activities that took place in elite households.
2004, 506–11). At Chichen Itza, murals and carvings show battles in progress or processions of warriors. For example, the dozens of warriors carved on the stone columns that allowed entrance into the Temple of the Warriors record processions following victories by Chichen’s army (Schele and Freidel 1990) and murals in the Upper Temple of the Jaguars and in Las Monjas show sieges of walled settlements (Ringle et al. 2004). At Mayapan, skeletal figures, some with niches where human skulls would have been placed, have been recently uncovered on an earlier temple within the Castillo, the largest pyramid at the site (Milbrath and Peraza Lope 2003).