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Cambridge University Press
Online publication date:
December 2021
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Book description

Urbanization is a phenomenon that brings into focus a range of topics of broad interest to scholars. It is one of the central, enduring interests of anthropological archaeology. Because urbanization is a transformational process, it changes the relationships between social and cultural variables such as demography, economy, politics, and ideology. As one of a handful of cases in the ancient world where cities developed independently, Mesoamerica should play a major role in the global, comparative analysis of first-generation cities and urbanism in general. Yet most research focuses on later manifestations of urbanism in Mesoamerica, thereby perpetuating the fallacy that Mesoamerican cities developed relatively late in comparison to urban centers in the rest of the world. This volume presents new data, case studies, and models for approaching the subject of early Mesoamerican cities. It demonstrates how the study of urbanism in Mesoamerica, and all ancient civilizations, is entering a new and dynamic phase of scholarship.

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