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December 07 , 2007

Kukulkan's Realm

Urban Life at Ancient Mayapán


Kukulkan's Realm chronicles the fabric of socioeconomic relationships and religious practice that bound the Postclassic Maya city of Mayapán's urban residents together for nearly three centuries. Presenting results of ten years of household archaeology at the city, including field research and laboratory analysis, the book discusses the social, political, economic, and ideological makeup of this complex urban center.

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Masson and Peraza Lope's detailed overview provides evidence of a vibrant market economy that played a critical role in the city's political and economic success. They offer new perspectives from the homes of governing elites, secondary administrators, affluent artisans, and poorer members of the service industries. Household occupational specialists depended on regional trade for basic provisions that were essential to crafting industries, sustenance, and quality of life. Settlement patterns reveal intricate relationships of households with neighbors, garden plots, cultivable fields, thoroughfares, and resources. Urban planning endeavored to unite the cityscape and to integrate a pluralistic populace that derived from hometowns across the Yucatán peninsula.

New data from Mayapán, the pinnacle of Postclassic Maya society, contribute to a paradigm change regarding the evolution and organization of Maya society in general and make Kukulkan's Realm a must-read for students and scholars of the ancient Maya and Mesoamerica.

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