Maya Political Science: Time, Astronomy, and the Cosmos by Prudence M. Rice

By Prudence M. Rice

How did the traditional Maya rule their international? regardless of greater than a century of archaeological research and glyphic decipherment, the character of Maya political association and political geography has remained an open query. Many debates have raged over types of centralization as opposed to decentralization, superordinate and subordinate status—with far-flung analogies to rising states in Europe, Asia, and Africa. yet Prudence Rice asserts that neither the version of 2 monstrous "superpowers" nor that which postulates rankings of small, weakly autonomous polities suits the collecting physique of fabric and cultural evidence.

In this groundbreaking publication, Rice builds a brand new version of vintage lowland Maya (AD 179-948) political association and political geography. utilizing the strategy of direct historic analogy, she integrates ethnohistoric and ethnographic wisdom of the Colonial-period and smooth Maya with archaeological, epigraphic, and iconographic information from the traditional Maya. in this foundation of cultural continuity, she constructs a powerful case that the basic ordering ideas of vintage Maya geopolitical association have been the calendar (specifically a 256-year cycle of time often called the may) and the concept that of quadripartition, or the department of the cosmos into 4 cardinal instructions. Rice additionally examines this new version of geopolitical association within the Preclassic and Postclassic classes and demonstrates that it deals clean insights into the character of rulership, ballgame ritual, and battle one of the vintage lowland Maya.

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