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First Cities (Exploring the Ancient World)…
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Near East (Cradle), Egypt (Nile), Indus (Harappan), China (Shang), Mesoamerica, Maya, Andes. With Maps, References, Index.
The first chapter is a theoretical sketch of the rise of urbanism to state-level societies. Does not depart from the Childe-Mumford-Sjoberg classics.
Fails to mention or hint about the Scythian and upper Nile African influences which pre-date the Cradle and Lower Nile.
The chapter on the Olmec Cultura Madre (Covarrubias [103]) notes the radiocarbon dating of the San Lorenzo site to 1200 BC. However, the author fails to acknowledge African influences -- in spite of 60-ton carved basalt portraits of helmeted Negro warriors. Aiy! And then the claim that the first "true urban culture" in Mesoamerica was the Zapotecs of 500 BC [108]. The rulers surrounded themselves with stone trophies depicting mutilated, castrated, naked males. The defensive wall is huge. Warfare seems to have played a part in the rise of the Zapotec state at Monte Alban [108].
  keylawk | Feb 3, 2007 |
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"This introductory-level book of the 'Exploring the Ancient World' series deals with urbanism in six parts of the world. One chapter overviews Mesoamerica and discusses Olmec centers, Monte Albán, and Teotihuacán. Reflecting the author's interests, ancient Maya cities are discussed in a separate chapter. Color photographs and drawings"--Handbook of Latin American Studies, v. 57.… (more)

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