STAR GODS OF THE MAYA ASTRONOMY IN ART FOLKLORE AND CALENDARS LINDA SCHELE SERIES IN MAYA AND PRE COLUMBIAN STUDIES

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Star Gods Of The Maya

Author : Susan Milbrath
ISBN : 9780292778511
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 68.98 MB
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Observations of the sun, moon, planets, and stars played a central role in ancient Maya lifeways, as they do today among contemporary Maya who maintain the traditional ways. This pathfinding book reconstructs ancient Maya astronomy and cosmology through the astronomical information encoded in Precolumbian Maya art and confirmed by the current practices of living Maya peoples. Susan Milbrath opens the book with a discussion of modern Maya beliefs about astronomy, along with essential information on naked-eye observation. She devotes subsequent chapters to Precolumbian astronomical imagery, which she traces back through time, starting from the Colonial and Postclassic eras. She delves into many aspects of the Maya astronomical images, including the major astronomical gods and their associated glyphs, astronomical almanacs in the Maya codices [painted books], and changes in the imagery of the heavens over time. This investigation yields new data and a new synthesis of information about the specific astronomical events and cycles recorded in Maya art and architecture. Indeed, it constitutes the first major study of the relationship between art and astronomy in ancient Maya culture.
Category: Social Science

The Ritual Practice Of Time

Author : Lars Kirkhusmo Pharo
ISBN : 9789004252363
Genre : History
File Size : 44.56 MB
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Drawing upon the category “ritual practices of time” the book offers a comparative analytical model and theoretical insights about calendars in Mesoamerica and in general. This comprehensive study systematically explicates how ritual practises are represented and conceptualised in intellectual systems and societies.
Category: History

Archaeoastronomy And The Maya

Author : Gerardo Aldana y V.
ISBN : 9781782976462
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 57.84 MB
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Archaeoastronomy and the Maya illustrates archaeoastronomical approaches to ancient Mayan cultural production. The book is contextualized through a history of archaeoastronomical investigations into Mayan sites, originating in the 19th century discovery of astronomical tables within hieroglyphic books. Early 20th century archaeological excavations revealed inscriptions carved into stone that also preserved astronomical records, along with architecture that was built to reflect astronomical orientations. These materials provided the basis of a growing professionalized archaeoastronomy, blossoming in the 1970s and expanding into recent years. The chapters here exemplify the advances made in the field during the early 21st century as well as the on-going diversity of approaches, presenting new perspectives and discoveries in ancient Mayan astronomy that result from recent studies of architectural alignments, codices, epigraphy, iconography, ethnography, and calendrics. More than just investigations of esoteric ancient sciences, studies of ancient Mayan astronomy have profoundly aided our understanding of Mayan worldviews. Concepts of time and space, meanings encoded in religious art, intentions underlying architectural alignments, and even methods of political legitimization are all illuminated through the study of Mayan astronomy.
Category: Social Science

Latin American Studies

Author : Ana María Cobos
ISBN : UTEXAS:059173011921788
Genre : Reference
File Size : 45.34 MB
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The Latin American studies collections at many community, junior and four year colleges, and large public libraries often contain materials that are too specialized, uneven, outdated, incomplete, or written in Spanish or Portuguese--thus rendering them essentially useless to English-reading patrons. Better materials are out there, but librarians simply have not had, until now, a good resource guide to help in locating them. This work, designed as an acquisitions tool for colleges and libraries, is an annotated bibliography of approximately 1,400 recommended books published from 1986 through 2000 in the field of Latin American studies. It is divided into chapters that deal with reference works, descriptive accounts and travel guides, the humanities, language and literature, the social sciences, and science and technology. For the purposes of this book, Latin America is defined as all geographic locations south of the Rio Grande. While these are chiefly Spanish and Portuguese speaking regions, works about French, English, and Dutch speaking areas are also included. The literary works of authors living abroad are included if they are considered quintessentially Latin American. Periodicals, children's literature, audio-visual resources, and works about the Hispanic and Latino experience in the United States are not included. The majority of the works presented here were selected based on reviews from Booklist, Choice, Hispanic American Historical Review, Library Journal, Los Angeles Times Book Review, New York Review of Books, New York Times Book Review and Publisher's Weekly; also consulted were the catalogs of major university presses that focus on Latin American studies.
Category: Reference

Yaxchilan

Author : Carolyn E. Tate
ISBN : 9780292739123
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 81.76 MB
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As archaeologists peel away the jungle covering that has both obscured and preserved the ancient Maya cities of Mexico and Central America, other scholars have only a limited time to study and understand the sites before the jungle, weather, and human encroachment efface them again, perhaps forever. This urgency underlies Yaxchilan: The Design of a Maya Ceremonial City, Carolyn Tate's comprehensive catalog and analysis of all the city's extant buildings and sculptures. During a year of field work, Tate fully documented the appearance of the site as of 1987. For each sculpture and building, she records its discovery, present location, condition, measurements, and astronomical orientation and reconstructs its Long Counts and Julian dates from Calendar Rounds. Line drawings and photographs provide a visual document of the art and architecture of Yaxchilan. More than mere documentation, however, the book explores the phenomenon of art within Maya society. Tate establishes a general framework of cultural practices, spiritual beliefs, and knowledge likely to have been shared by eighth-century Maya people. The process of making public art is considered in relation to other modes of aesthetic expression, such as oral tradition and ritual. This kind of analysis is new in Maya studies and offers fresh insight into the function of these magnificent cities and the powerful role public art and architecture play in establishing cultural norms, in education in a semiliterate society, and in developing the personal and community identities of individuals. Several chapters cover the specifics of art and iconography at Yaxchilan as a basis for examining the creation of the city in the Late Classic period. Individual sculptures are attributed to the hands of single artists and workshops, thus aiding in dating several of the monuments. The significance of headdresses, backracks, and other costume elements seen on monuments is tied to specific rituals and fashions, and influence from other sites is traced. These analyses lead to a history of the design of the city under the reigns of Shield Jaguar (A.D. 681-741) and Bird Jaguar IV (A.D. 752-772). In Tate's view, Yaxchilan and other Maya cities were designed as both a theater for ritual activities and a nexus of public art and social structures that were crucial in defining the self within Maya society.
Category: Social Science

Foundations Of New World Cultural Astronomy

Author : Anthony F. Aveni
ISBN : STANFORD:36105131668530
Genre : Science
File Size : 49.10 MB
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Gazing into the black skies from the Anasazi observatory at Chimney Rock or the Castillo Pyramid in the Maya ruins of Chichen Itza, a modern visitor might wonder what ancient stargazers looked for in the skies and what they saw. Once considered unresearchable, these questions now drive cultural astronomers who draw on written and unwritten records and a constellation of disciplines. Cultural astronomy has evolved at ferocious speed since its genesis in the 1960s, with seminal essays and powerful rebuttals published in far-flung, specialized journals. Until now, only the most closely involved scholars could follow the intellectual fireworks. In this new reader, Anthony Aveni--one of cultural astronomy's founders and top scholars and a former National Professor of the Year--offers a selection of the essays that built the field, from foundational works to contemporary scholarship. Aveni also serves up incisive commentary, background for the uninitiated, suggested reading, and more.
Category: Science

Heaven And Earth In Ancient Mexico

Author : Susan Milbrath
ISBN : 9780292743731
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 90.71 MB
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The Codex Borgia, a masterpiece that predates the Spanish conquest of central Mexico, records almanacs used in divination and astronomy. Within its beautifully painted screenfold pages is a section (pages 29–46) that shows a sequence of enigmatic pictures that have been the subject of debate for more than a century. Bringing insights from ethnohistory, anthropology, art history, and archaeoastronomy to bear on this passage, Susan Milbrath presents a convincing new interpretation of Borgia 29–46 as a narrative of noteworthy astronomical events that occurred over the course of the year AD 1495–1496, set in the context of the central Mexican festival calendar. In contrast to scholars who have interpreted Borgia 29–46 as a mythic history of the heavens and the earth, Milbrath demonstrates that the narrative documents ancient Mesoamericans' understanding of real-time astronomy and natural history. Interpreting the screenfold's complex symbols in light of known astronomical events, she finds that Borgia 29–46 records such phenomena as a total solar eclipse in August 1496, a November meteor shower, a comet first sighted in February 1496, and the changing phases of Venus and Mercury. She also shows how the narrative is organized according to the eighteen-month festival calendar and how seasonal cycles in nature are represented in its imagery. This new understanding of the content and purpose of the Codex Borgia reveals this long-misunderstood narrative as the most important historical record of central Mexican astronomy on the eve of the Spanish conquest.
Category: Social Science

Latin America

Author : Juan Manuel Pérez
ISBN : UTEXAS:059173019112570
Genre : Language Arts & Disciplines
File Size : 87.51 MB
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Category: Language Arts & Disciplines

The Jaguar Within

Author : Rebecca R. Stone
ISBN : 9780292749504
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 76.17 MB
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Shamanism—the practice of entering a trance state to experience visions of a reality beyond the ordinary and to gain esoteric knowledge—has been an important part of life for indigenous societies throughout the Americas from prehistoric times until the present. Much has been written about shamanism in both scholarly and popular literature, but few authors have linked it to another significant visual realm—art. In this pioneering study, Rebecca R. Stone considers how deep familiarity with, and profound respect for, the extra-ordinary visionary experiences of shamanism profoundly affected the artistic output of indigenous cultures in Central and South America before the European invasions of the sixteenth century. Using ethnographic accounts of shamanic trance experiences, Stone defines a core set of trance vision characteristics, including enhanced senses, ego dissolution, bodily distortions, flying, spinning and undulating sensations, synaesthesia, and physical transformation from the human self into animal and other states of being. Stone then traces these visionary characteristics in ancient artworks from Costa Rica and Peru. She makes a convincing case that these works, especially those of the Moche, depict shamans in a trance state or else convey the perceptual experience of visions by creating deliberately chaotic and distorted conglomerations of partial, inverted, and incoherent images.
Category: Social Science

Archaeology

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