Two Ways of Knowing: Creating Ancient Maya History through Inscriptions and Archaeology

Mon., Sep. 18, 2017, 6:00 pm
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Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology. Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford Street, Cambridge
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September 18

Scholars have made significant advances in the interpretation of ancient Maya hieroglyphs in the past forty years. The deep understanding of these inscriptions makes the study of the ancient Maya as complex and layered as that of Mesopotamian, Egyptian, Greek, or Roman civilizations—each of which combines the reading of texts with the physical remains of archaeological excavations. This important development, however, also raises issues about how the integration of textual and material evidence is best achieved. Simon Martin will explore this challenge within the context of Maya studies and review the academic debate over the ways in which history is both discovered and created.