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The ancient Maya civilization was one of the most sophisticated and complex cultures of prehispanic Central America. Its complex calendrics, astronomy, mathematics, art and hieroglyphic writing system are celebrated worldwide. The course will examine the trajectory and nature of ancient Maya civilization from the combined perspectives of archaeology and art history. The origins and evolution of the Maya states during the Preclassic period (1000 B.C.-A.D. 250) will be explored through the rich archaeological remains and Preclassic art styles. The Classic Maya civilization (A.D. 250-1000) will then be presented through a detailed survey of the archaeology, art and hieroglyphic texts of this period. Finally, the collapse of Classic Maya civilization and its transformation and endurance during the Postclassic period and under early Spanish rule (A.D. 1000-1600) will be critically evaluated through a review of the archaeological, iconographic, and ethnohistorical evidence.
Format: lecture; lecture/discussion
Grading: no pass/fail option,
yes fifth course option
midterm and final exams, hieroglyphic project, 15pp research paper
none, but an introductory ARTH or ANTH course recommended
Anthropology/Sociology and Art History majors
This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit: