Search results for: pre-columbian-foodways

Pre Columbian Foodways

Author : John Staller
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The significance of food and feasting to Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican cultures has been extensively studied by archaeologists, anthropologists and art historians. Foodways studies have been critical to our understanding of early agriculture, political economies, and the domestication and management of plants and animals. Scholars from diverse fields have explored the symbolic complexity of food and its preparation, as well as the social importance of feasting in contemporary and historical societies. This book unites these disciplinary perspectives — from the social and biological sciences to art history and epigraphy — creating a work comprehensive in scope, which reveals our increasing understanding of the various roles of foods and cuisines in Mesoamerican cultures. The volume is organized thematically into three sections. Part 1 gives an overview of food and feasting practices as well as ancient economies in Mesoamerica. Part 2 details ethnographic, epigraphic and isotopic evidence of these practices. Finally, Part 3 presents the metaphoric value of food in Mesoamerican symbolism, ritual, and mythology. The resulting volume provides a thorough, interdisciplinary resource for understanding, food, feasting, and cultural practices in Mesoamerica.

Andean Foodways

Author : John E. Staller
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Political Strategies in Pre Columbian Mesoamerica

Author : Sarah Kurnick
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Political authority contains an inherent contradiction. Rulers must reinforce social inequality and bolster their own unique position at the top of the sociopolitical hierarchy, yet simultaneously emphasize social similarities and the commonalities shared by all. Political Strategies in Pre-Columbian Mesoamerica explores the different and complex ways that those who exercised authority in the region confronted this contradiction. New data from a variety of well-known scholars in Mesoamerican archaeology reveal the creation, perpetuation, and contestation of politically authoritative relationships between rulers and subjects and between nobles and commoners. The contributions span the geographic breadth and temporal extent of pre-Columbian Mesoamerica—from Preclassic Oaxaca to the Classic Petén region of Guatemala to the Postclassic Michoacán—and the contributors weave together archaeological, epigraphic, and ethnohistoric data. Grappling with the questions of how those exercising authority convince others to follow and why individuals often choose to recognize and comply with authority, Political Strategies in Pre-Columbian Mesoamerica discusses why the study of political authority is both timely and significant, reviews how scholars have historically understood the operation of political authority, and proposes a new analytical framework to understand how rulers rule. Contributors include Sarah B. Barber, Joanne Baron, Christopher S. Beekman, Jeffrey Brzezinski, Bryce Davenport, Charles Golden, Takeshi Inomata, Arthur A. Joyce, Sarah Kurnick, Carlo J. Lucido, Simon Martin, Tatsuya Murakami, Helen Perlstein Pollard, and Víctor Salazar Chávez.

The Anthropology of Latin America and the Caribbean

Author : Harry Sanabria
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This wide-ranging introduction to the anthropology of Latin America and the Caribbean offers broad coverage of culture and society in the region, taking into account historical developments as well as the roles of power and inequality. The chapters address key topics such as colonialism, globalization, violence, religion, race and ethnicity, gender and sexuality, health, and food, and emphasize the impact of Latin American and Caribbean peoples and cultures in the United States. The text has been thoroughly updated for the second edition, including fresh case studies and new chapters on independence, neoliberalism and immigration, and popular culture and the digital revolution. Students are provided with a solid overview of the major contemporary trends, issues, and debates in the field. Each chapter ends with a summary, up-to-date recommendations for viewing films/videos and websites, and a comprehensive bibliography for further reading and research.

K Oben

Author : Amber M. O'Connor
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K’Oben traces the Maya kitchen and its associated hardware, ingredients, and cooking styles from the earliest times for which there is archaeological evidence through today’s culinary tourism in the area.

Local Food Plants of Brazil

Author : Michelle Cristine Medeiros Jacob
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Her Cup for Sweet Cacao

Author : Traci Ardren
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For the ancient Maya, food was both sustenance and a tool for building a complex society. This collection, the first to focus exclusively on the social uses of food in Classic Maya culture, deploys a variety of theoretical approaches to examine the meaning of food beyond diet—ritual offerings and restrictions, medicinal preparations, and the role of nostalgia around food, among other topics. For instance, how did Maya feasts build community while also reinforcing social hierarchy? What psychoactive substances were the elite Maya drinking in their caves, and why? Which dogs were good for eating, and which breeds became companions? Why did even some non-elite Maya enjoy cacao, but rarely meat? Why was meat more available for urban Maya than those closer to hunting grounds on the fringes of cities? How did the molcajete become a vital tool and symbol in Maya gastronomy? These chapters, written by some of the leading scholars in the field, showcase a variety of approaches and present new evidence from faunal remains, hieroglyphic texts, chemical analyses, and art. Thoughtful and revealing, Her Cup for Sweet Cacao unlocks a more comprehensive understanding of how food was instrumental to the development of ancient Maya culture.

The Prehistory of Food

Author : Chris Gosden
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The Prehistory of Food sets subsistence in its social context by focusing on food as a cultural artefact. It brings together contributors with a scientific and biological expertise as well as those interested in the patterns of consumption and social change, and includes a wide range of case studies.

Local Foods Meet Global Foodways

Author : Benjamin N Lawrance
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This book explores the intersection of food and foodways from global and local perspectives. The collection contributes to interdisciplinary debates about the role and movement of commodities in the historical and contemporary world. The expert contributions collectively address a fundamental tension in the emerging scholarly terrain of food studies, namely theorizing the relationship between foodstuff production and cuisine patterns. They explore a wide variety of topics, including curry, bread, sugar, coffee, milk, pulque, Virginia ham, fast-food, obesity, and US ethnic restaurants. Local Foods Meet Global Foodways considers movements in context, and, in doing so, complicates the notions that food 'shapes' culture as it crosses borders or that culture 'adapts' foods to its neo-local or global contexts. By analysing the dynamics of contact between mobile foods and/or people and the specific cultures of consumption they provoke, these case studies reveal the process whereby local foods become global or global foods become local, to be a dynamic, co-creative development jointly facilitated by humans and nature. This volume explores a vast expanse of global regions, such as North and Central America, Europe, China, East Asia and the Pacific, India, sub-Saharan Africa, the Atlantic Ocean, and the USSR/Russia. It includes a foreword by the eminent food scholar Carole Counihan, and an afterword by noted theorist of cuisine Rachel Laudan, and will be of great interest to students and researchers of history, anthropology, geography, cultural studies and American studies. This book is based on a special issue of Food and Foodways.

Diet Nutrition and Foodways on the North Coast of Peru

Author : Bethany L. Turner
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This book synthesizes in-depth bioarchaeological research into diet, subsistence regimes, and nutrition—and corresponding insights into adaptation, suffering, and resilience—among indigenous north-coastal Peruvian communities from early agricultural through European colonial periods. The Spanish invasion and colonization of Andean South America left millions dead, landscapes transformed, and traditional ways of life annihilated. However, the nature and magnitude of these changes were far from uniform. By the time the Spanish arrived, over four millennia of complex societies had emerged and fallen, and in the 16th century, the region was home to the largest and most expansive indigenous empire in the western hemisphere. Decades of Andean archaeological and ethnohistorical research have explored the incredible sophistication of regional agropastoral traditions, the importance of food and feasting as mechanisms of control, and the significance of maritime economies in the consolidation of complex polities. Bioarchaeology is particularly useful in studying these processes. Beyond identifying what resources were available and how they were prepared, bioarchaeological methods provide unique opportunities and humanized perspectives to reconstruct what individuals actually ate, and whether their diets changed within their own lifespans.

Routledge International Handbook of Food Studies

Author : Ken Albala
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Over the past decade there has been a remarkable flowering of interest in food and nutrition, both within the popular media and in academia. Scholars are increasingly using foodways, food systems and eating habits as a new unit of analysis within their own disciplines, and students are rushing into classes and formal degree programs focused on food. Introduced by the editor and including original articles by over thirty leading food scholars from around the world, the Routledge International Handbook of Food Studies offers students, scholars and all those interested in food-related research a one-stop, easy-to-use reference guide. Each article includes a brief history of food research within a discipline or on a particular topic, a discussion of research methodologies and ideological or theoretical positions, resources for research, including archives, grants and fellowship opportunities, as well as suggestions for further study. Each entry also explains the logistics of succeeding as a student and professional in food studies. This clear, direct Handbook will appeal to those hoping to start a career in academic food studies as well as those hoping to shift their research to a food-related project. Strongly interdisciplinary, this work will be of interest to students and scholars throughout the social sciences and humanities.

Pre Columbian Art

Author : Hildegard Delgado Pang
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This profusely illustrated, up-to-date introduction to the pre-columbian art of Mesoamerica and Andean South America examines our conceptions of the ancient high cultures, the art they produced, and how our modern-day interpretations were achieved. The book is unique in that it draws on a great variety of scholarly disciplines to interpret the art forms. Since the 1960s our understanding of the Aztec, Maya, Inca, and Andean civilizations has increased dramatically through coordinated interdisciplinary research. In this summary of new and past investigations, Hilda Delgado Pang describes previously unknown historical figures and dynasties. In a clear and entertaining style, she tells how the pre-columbian artists validated their rulers, recorded rituals, portrayed the supernatural and astronomical cosmos, and commemorated transitions from life into death. As she describes the Mesoamerican and Andean high cultures, she also explains the special role that art plays in all societies, ancient and modern. Pre-columbian artists expressed themselves in sculpture and monumental architecture, glyphic notations, weavings, and painted ceramics--beginning about 2000 B.C. and, in some areas, continuing after the Spanish conquest. This new introductory text explores the contributions of epigraphy, formal and iconographic analyses, chemical and botanical identifications, and ethnographic and ethnohistorical sources to our knowledge of the major art styles: Olmec, Toltec, Maya, Aztec, Chavin, Paracas, Nasca, Moche, Tiahuanaco-Huari, Chimu, and Inca. From this book students and general readers will gain challenging insights into both the ancient art forms described and the fast-moving disciplines thatenergize research in the field today.

Reading the Dental Record

Author : Hayley Louise Mickleburgh
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Lightning in the Andes and Mesoamerica

Author : John E. Staller
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Lightning has evoked a numinous response as well as powerful timeless references and symbols among ancient religions throughout the world. Thunder and lightning have also taken on various symbolic manifestations, some representing primary deities, as in the case of Zeus and Jupiter in the Greco/Roman tradition, and Thor in Norse myth. Similarly, lightning veneration played an important role to the ancient civilizations of Mesoamerica and Andean South America. Lightning veneration and the religious cults and their associated rituals represent to varying degrees a worship of nature and the forces that shape the natural world. The inter-relatedness of the cultural and natural environment is related to what may be called a widespread cultural perception of the natural world as sacred, a kind of mythic landscape. Comparative analysis of the Andes and Mesoamerica has been a recurring theme recently in part because two of the areas of "high civilization" in the Americas have much in common despite substantial ecological differences, and in part because there is some evidence, of varying quality, that some people had migrated from one area to the other. Lightning in the Andes and Mesoamerica is the first ever study to explore the symbolic elements surrounding lightning in their associated Pre-Columbian religious ideologies. Moreover, it extends its examination to contemporary culture to reveal how cultural perceptions of the sacred, their symbolic representations and ritual practices, and architectural representations in the landscape were conjoined in the ancient past. Ethnographic accounts and ethnohistoric documents provide insights through first-hand accounts that broaden our understanding of levels of syncretism since the European contact. The interdisciplinary research presented herein also provides a basis for tracing back Pre-Columbian manifestations of lightning its associated religious beliefs and ritual practices, as well as its mythological, symbolic, iconographic, and architectural representations to earlier civilizations. This unique study will be of great interest to scholars of Pre-Columbian South and Mesoamerica, and will stimulate future comparative studies by archaeologists and anthropologists.

Scorched Earth

Author : Emmanuel Kreike
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A global history of environmental warfare and the case for why it should be a crime The environmental infrastructure that sustains human societies has been a target and instrument of war for centuries, resulting in famine and disease, displaced populations, and the devastation of people’s livelihoods and ways of life. Scorched Earth traces the history of scorched earth, military inundations, and armies living off the land from the sixteenth to the twentieth century, arguing that the resulting deliberate destruction of the environment—"environcide"—constitutes total war and is a crime against humanity and nature. In this sweeping global history, Emmanuel Kreike shows how religious war in Europe transformed Holland into a desolate swamp where hunger and the black death ruled. He describes how Spanish conquistadores exploited the irrigation works and expansive agricultural terraces of the Aztecs and Incas, triggering a humanitarian crisis of catastrophic proportions. Kreike demonstrates how environmental warfare has continued unabated into the modern era. His panoramic narrative takes readers from the Thirty Years' War to the wars of France's Sun King, and from the Dutch colonial wars in North America and Indonesia to the early twentieth century colonial conquest of southwestern Africa. Shedding light on the premodern origins and the lasting consequences of total war, Scorched Earth explains why ecocide and genocide are not separate phenomena, and why international law must recognize environmental warfare as a violation of human rights.


Author : Claudia Brittenham
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Vessels can take many forms: as objects made for human interaction and handling, they both contain and are bounded by space. They can be constructed of a wide variety of materials. But the range of vessels - across history and across cultures - are unified in their potential for practical functioning, whether or not a particular object is in fact made to be used in its particular context. In this volume, four essays by leading scholars tackle the category of the vessel in a comparative conversation between classical Greece, late antique Rome, pre-Columbian Mesoamerica, and ancient China. By considering the material properties of the object as container, the interactions between user and artefact, and the power of the vessel as both conceptual category and material metaphor, they argue that many vessels - and assemblages of vessels - were sites of remarkable workmanship and considerable ingenuity, smart and sophisticated commentaries on the very categories that they embody. In placing these individual case studies in dialogue, the volume offers an art historical and cross-cultural study of vessels in ancient societies, considering both objects and their archaeological contexts. Its aim is to make illuminating comparisons, contrasts, and interpretations by juxtaposing traditions. In keeping with the aims of the series, it serves as a model for a new kind of comparative art history, one which emphasizes material culture and is attentive to questions of evidence and method, yet remains historically grounded and contextually sensitive.

Markets and Exchanges in Pre Modern and Traditional Societies

Author : Juan Carlos Moreno Garcia
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Markets emerge in recent historical research as important spheres of economic interaction in ancient societies. In the case of ancient Egypt, traditional models imagined an all-encompassing centralized, bureaucratic economy that left practically no place for market transactions, as many surviving documents only described the activities of the royal palace and of huge institutions?mainly temples. Yet scattered references in the sources reveal that markets and traders were crucial actors in the economic life of ancient Egypt. In this perspective, this volume aims to discuss the role of markets, traders and economic interaction (not necessarily organized through markets) and the use of “money” (metals, valuable commodities) in pre-modern societies, based on archaeological, anthropological and historical evidence. Furthermore, it intends to integrate different perspectives about the social organization of transactions and exchanges and the different forms taken by markets, from meeting places where exchanges operated under ritualized procedures and conventions, to markets in which profit-seeking activities were marginal in respect with other practices that stressed, on the contrary, community collaboration. The book also deals with social forms of pre-modern exchanges in which trust and ethnic solidarity guaranteed the validity of commercial operations in the absence of formal codes of laws or accepted authorities over long distances (trade diasporas, guilds, etc.). Finally, the volume analyzes a critical aspect of small-scale trade and markets, such as the commercialization of agricultural household production and its impact on the peasant economic strategies. In all, the book covers a diversity of topics in which recent research in the fields of economic sociology, archaeology, anthropology, economics and history proves invaluable in order to analyze the role of Egyptian trade in a broader perspective, as well as to suggest new venues of comparative research, theoretical reflection and dialogue between Egyptology and social sciences. The book will also address pre-modern social organizations of trade activities in which trust and ethnic solidarity guaranteed the validity of commercial operations in the absence of formal codes of laws or accepted authorities over long distances, particularly trade diasporas, guilds, etc. This book will be the first in the new series from Oxbow, Multidisciplinary Approaches to Ancient Societies.

Human Figuration and Fragmentation in Preclassic Mesoamerica

Author : Julia Guernsey
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Explores the social significance of representation of the human body in Preclassic Mesoamerica.

Routledge Handbook of Landscape and Food

Author : Joshua Zeunert
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Since the turn of the millennium, there has been a burgeoning interest in, and literature of, both landscape studies and food studies. Landscape describes places as relationships and processes. Landscapes create people’s identities and guide their actions and their preferences, while at the same time are shaped by the actions and forces of people. Food, as currency, medium, and sustenance, is a fundamental part of those landscape relationships. This volume brings together over fifty contributors from around the world in forty profoundly interdisciplinary chapters. Chapter authors represent an astonishing range of disciplines, from agronomy, anthropology, archaeology, conservation, countryside management, cultural studies, ecology, ethics, geography, heritage studies, landscape architecture, landscape management and planning, literature, urban design and architecture. Both food studies and landscape studies defy comprehension from the perspective of a single discipline, and thus such a range is both necessary and enriching. The Routledge Handbook of Landscape and Food is intended as a first port of call for scholars and researchers seeking to undertake new work at the many intersections of landscape and food. Each chapter provides an authoritative overview, a broad range of pertinent readings and references, and seeks to identify areas where new research is needed—though these may also be identified in the many fertile areas in which subjects and chapters overlap within the book.

Politics of the Maya Court

Author : Sarah E. Jackson
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In recent decades, advances in deciphering Maya hieroglyphic writing have given scholars new tools for understanding key aspects of ancient Maya society. This book—the first comprehensive examination of the Maya royal court—exemplifies the importance of these new sources. Authored by anthropologist Sarah E. Jackson and richly illustrated with drawings, photographs, and maps, Politics of the Maya Court uses hieroglyphic and iconographic evidence to explore the composition and social significance of royal courts in the Late Classic period (a.d. 600–900), with a special emphasis on the role of courtly elites. As Jackson explains, the Maya region of southern Mexico and Central America was not a unified empire but a loosely aggregated culture area composed of independent kingdoms. Royal courts had a presence in large, central communities from Chiapas to Yucatan and the highlands of Guatemala and western Honduras. Each major polity was ruled by a k’uhul ajaw, or holy lord, who embodied intertwined aspects of religious and political authority. The hieroglyphic texts that adorned walls, furniture, and portable items in these centers of power provide specific information about the positions, roles, and meanings of the courts. Jackson uses these documents as keys to understanding Classic Maya political hierarchy and, specifically, the institution of the royal court. Within this context, she investigates the lives of the nobility and the participation of elites in court politics. By identifying particular individuals and their life stories, Jackson humanizes Maya society, showing how events resulted from the actions and choices of specific people. Jackson’s innovative portrayal of court membership provides a foundation for scholarship on the nature, functions, and responsibilities of Maya royal courts.