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Aztecs: An Interpretation

Aztecs: An Interpretation

Paperback Canto

By (author) Inga Clendinnen

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Paperback $18.86
  • Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
  • Format: Paperback | 414 pages
  • Dimensions: 137mm x 213mm x 25mm | 499g
  • Publication date: 1 April 1995
  • Publication City/Country: Cambridge
  • ISBN 10: 0521485851
  • ISBN 13: 9780521485852
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Illustrations note: 12 b/w illus. 11 colour illus. 2 maps
  • Sales rank: 325,952

Product description

In 1521, the city of Tenochtitlan, magnificent centre of the Aztec empire, fell to the Spaniards and their Indian allies. Inga Clendinnen's account of the Aztecs recreates the culture of that city in its last unthreatened years. It provides a vividly dramatic analysis of Aztec ceremony as performance art, binding the key experiences and concerns of social existence in the late imperial city to the mannnered violence of their ritual killings. 'Inga Clendinnen's vivid study Aztecs begins and ends with the Aztec capital Tenochtitlan, the glistening lake city which rose like a dream to the Spaniards who first saw it ...It takes us deep into the heart of Mexican or Aztec society.' The Times Literary Supplement '...a fascinating, thought-provoking book.Aztecs offers a gripping account of an alien society and thus enlarges our apprehension of the sheer diversity of human culture.' London Review of Books 'This is an outstanding book, as rich in its reconstruction of social details as in its lucid analyses of the 'interior architecture' of the Aztec world.' The Times Higher Education Supplement

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Review quote

'Inga Clendinnen's vivid study Aztecs begins and ends with the Aztec capital Tenochtitlan, the glistening lake city which rose like a dream to the Spaniards who first saw it ... It takes us deep into the heart of Mexican or Aztec society.' The Times Literary Supplement

Editorial reviews

When the Spanish arrived in central America their reports on the Mexico peoples they found there were confusing. Some missionaries believed that Christ's apostles must have reached them long before, while others described the bloody human sacrifices for which the Aztecs have become notorious. In this extraordinarily well-researched and readable work, Inga Clendinnen tries to resolve the conflict between a society which was fastidious and highly cultivated, yet which thrived upon such ritualized brutality. She shows us that these were all aspects of an extraordinarily complex culture which developed along lines different from any other we know. In attempting to show Aztec society from the point of view of the Aztecs themselves, Professor Clendinnen presents a unique portrait of an eternally fascinating people. (Kirkus UK)

Table of contents

Introduction; Part I. The City: 1. Tenochtitlan: the public image; 2. Local perspectives; Part II. Roles: 3. Victims; 4. Warriors, priests and merchants; 5. The masculine self discovered; 6. Wives; 7. Mothers; 8. The female being revealed; Part III. The Sacred: 9. Aesthetics; 10. Ritual: the world transformed, the world revealed; Part IV. 11. Defeat; Epilogue; A question of sources; Monthly ceremonies of the seasonal calendar; The Mexica pantheon; Notes; Select Bibliography; Index.