Daily Life of the Aztecs

Daily Life of the Aztecs : People of the Sun and Earth

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Examine the fascinating and often controversial details of the daily lives of the ancient Aztecs through this innovative study written from the perspective of the history of religions. The Aztec people come to life for students, teachers, and interested readers through the exploration of the ceremonial character of their social and symbolic imagination. Insights into the communities they created, the games they played, the education they received, the foods they harvested, and the songs they sang, as well as the sacrificial rituals they performed, enable the reader to gain a better understanding of this complicated culture. The Aztecs organized their society as a microcosm of the cosmos that intricately linked all aspects of their daily lives to the natural and supernatural world. Carrasco explores the details of the Aztecs' lives and provides an in-depth look at all of these connections to help the reader comprehend the complexity of this ancient culture: The Aztec calendar, Aztec religion and myths, Aztec marketplace, Aztec art and architecture, Aztec war, and autosacrifice and sacrifice are just some topics among the vast number that are colorfully presented. Actual Aztec poems and riddles scattered throughout the text, provide an even deeper understanding of their world view. Carrasco also examines the Aztecs' violent encounter with Europeans and illustrates the long-term significance of colonialism and Aztec culture reflected in modern-day Mexican and Mexican American imaginations.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 304 pages
  • 166.4 x 241.8 x 32.3mm | 630.4g
  • Greenwood Press
  • Westport, United States
  • English
  • 1, black & white illustrations
  • 0313295581
  • 9780313295584
  • 1,905,562

Review quote

?Carrasco [and] Sessions...have combined their talents to present this overview of pre-Columbian Aztec culture that reflects the latest scholarship while remaining accessible to lay readers....This excellent book is recommended for public and academic libraries.?-American Reference Books Annualshow more

About David Carrasco

DAVID CARRASCO is the Director of the Moses Mesoamerican Archive and Professor of History of Religions at Princeton University. His previous works include Moctezuma's Mexico: Visions of the Aztec World with Eduardo Matos Moctezuma (1992), Quetzalcoatl and the Irony of Empire: Myths and Prophecies in the Aztec Tradition (1982 and 1992). To Change Place: Aztec Ceremonial Landscapes (1991), and Religions of Mesoamerica: Cosmovision and Ceremonial Centers (1990) - SCOTT SESSIONS is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Religion at Princeton University. - He is also administrative assistant and researcher at the Moses Mesoamerican Archive (Princeton University), a researcher for the Afro-American Religion: A Documentary History Projet (Amherst College), and development editor for the Oxford Encyclopedia of Mesoamerican Cultures. He served as assistant editor for Moctezuma's Mexico: World Visions of the Aztec World (1992) and a consultant for several documentaries and museum exhibits.show more

Table of contents

Preface; Chronology of Central Mexico; Cemanahuac: The Land Surrounded by Water; The World View of Balance: The Cosmic Tree and the Four Quarters; Mountains of Water: Tenochtitlan and Aztec Communities; Education and the Aztec Life Cycle: From Birth to Death and Beyond; The Social Pyramid: Maintaining Your Place and the World; Aztec Aesthetics: Flowers and Songs; Where the Jaguars Roar: Aztec Human Sacrifice as Debt Payment; The two Tongues: The Aztecs Encounter the Europeans; The Long Event of Aztec Culture; Notes; Glossary; Selected Bibliography; Index.show more