The Maya World

The Maya World

Yucatec Culture and Society, 1550-1850

eBook - 1997
Rate this:
Chicago Distribution Center
This pathbreaking work is a social and cultural history of the Maya peoples of the province of Yucatan in colonial Mexico, spanning the period from shortly after the Spanish conquest of the region to its incorporation as part of an independent Mexico.

Instead of depending on the Spanish sources and perspectives that have formed the basis of previous scholarship on colonial Yucatan, the author aims to give a voice to the Maya themselves, basing his analysis entirely on his translations of hundreds of Yucatec Maya notarial documentsfrom libraries and archives in Mexico, Spain, and the United Statesmost of which have never before received scholarly attention.

These documents allow the author to reconstruct the social and cultural world of the Maya municipality, orcah, the self-governing community where most Mayas lived and which was the focus of Maya social and political identity. The first two parts of the book examine the ways in which Mayas were organized and differentiated from each other within the community, and the discussion covers such topics as individual and group identities, sociopolitical organization, political factionalism, career patterns, class structures, household and family patterns, inheritance, gender roles, sexuality, and religion.

The third part explores the material environment of the cah, emphasizing the role played by the use and exchange of land, while the fourth part describes in detail the nature and significance of the source documentation, its genres and its language. Throughout the book, the author pays attention to the comparative contexts of changes over time and the similarities or differences between Maya patterns and those of other colonial-era Mesoamericans, notably the Nahuas of central Mexico.

Baker & Taylor
"Sophisticated study resting on a foundation of the analysis of postcontact indigenous language documentation ranging from notarial records to primordial titles. Author is interested in charting the persistence and evolution after the Spanish invasion of the Maya cahob, or self-governing communities, as well as the chibal, or extended family lineage. He does so with skill and aplomb, producing a major work of ethnohistorical analysis"--Handbook of Latin American Studies, v. 58.

Publisher: Stanford, Calif. : Stanford University Press, 1997
ISBN: 9780585062808
Characteristics: 1 online resource (xiv, 441 pages) : illustrations, maps


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

There are no comments for this title yet.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at WPL

To Top