In this Book

University of California Press
summary
Between 3500 and 500 bc, the social landscape of ancient Mesoamerica was completely transformed. At the beginning of this period, the mobile lifeways of a sparse population were oriented toward hunting and gathering. Three millennia later, protourban communities teemed with people. These essays by leading Mesoamerican archaeologists examine developments of the era as they unfolded in the Soconusco region along the Pacific coast of Mexico and Guatemala, a region that has emerged as crucial for understanding the rise of ancient civilizations in Mesoamerica. The contributors explore topics including the gendered division of labor, changes in subsistence, the character of ceremonialism, the emergence of social inequality, and large-scale patterns of population distribution and social change. Together, they demonstrate the contribution of Soconusco to cultural evolution in Mesoamerica and challenge what we thought we knew about the path toward social complexity.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. pp. 1-2
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  1. Title Page, Copyright
  2. pp. i-ii
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. iii-iv
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  1. Contributors
  2. pp. v-vi
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. viii-ix
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  1. 1. Early Social Transformations in the Soconusco
  2. pp. 1-24
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  1. Part I: Archaic to Formative
  2. pp. 25-26
  1. 2. A Gender- Based Model for Changes in Subsistence and Mobility During the Terminal Late Archaic Period on the Coast of Chiapas, Mexico
  2. pp. 27-46
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  1. 3. Evidence for the Diversity of Late Archaic and Early Formative Plant Use in the Soconusco Region of Mexico and Guatemala
  2. pp. 47-66
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  1. 4. Archaic to Formative in Soconusco
  2. pp. 67-94
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  1. Part II: Emergent Complexity
  2. pp. 94-96
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  1. 5. Building History in Domestic and Public Space at Paso de la Amada
  2. pp. 97-118
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  1. 6. Paso de la Amada as a Ceremonial Center
  2. pp. 119-145
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  1. 7. A History of Disaster and Cultural Change inthe Coatán River Drainage of the Soconusco, Chiapas, Mexico
  2. pp. 146-169
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  1. 8. La Blanca and the Soconusco Middle Formative
  2. pp. 170-188
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  1. Part III: Beyond the Individual Study Area
  2. pp. 189-190
  1. 9. Early Formative Transitions in Settlement and Subsistence at Chiquiuitan, Guatemala
  2. pp. 191-216
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  1. 10. Jocotal Settlement Patterns, Salt Production, and Pacific Coast Interactions
  2. pp. 217-241
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  1. 11. An Early Mesoamerican Archipelago of Complexity
  2. pp. 242-271
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  1. 12. Concluding Thoughts
  2. pp. 272-280
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 281-290
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  1. Production Notes
  2. pp. 291-294
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