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Ref ID: 25199
Ref Type: Book Section in a Series
Authors: Gunn, Joel D.
Folan, William J.
Isendahl, Christian
Carrasco, María del Rosario Domínguez
Faust, Betty B.
Volta, Beniamino
Title: Agent Risk and Sustainability in the Western Maya Lowlands
Date: 2014
Source: The Resilience and Vulnerability of Ancient Landscapes: Transforming Maya Archaeology through IHOPE
Publisher: American Anthropological Association
Abstract: Great attention has been focused on the southern trade routes across the Yucatan Peninsula through Tikal but little to the potential for crossing through Calakmul further to the north. This chapter shows that a combination of topography and politics make the Calakmul corridor the more efficient transit route. The political turmoil generated by Teotihuacan's involvement in Lowland trade following C.E. 378 cascaded into centuries of conflict between cities along the Tikal corridor and inhabitants of alternative routes. We trace the evolution of this conflict as influenced by landscape and climate, and decisions of the ambulatory Kaan Dynasty of El Mirador, Dzibanche, Calakmul and finally Calkini. The conflict seems to have played out in the elevated interior of the peninsula, the bone of contention perhaps being control of the Calakmul corridor through the Candelaria River. We suggest there are sufficient parallels between the Calakmul and European Rhône River corridors to draw a productive analogy between two, including that they both fall under the same synoptic climate system. Because the post‐Columbian world economic system rose indirectly from the Rhône corridor, the two systems make a good test bed for thinking about the future evolution of the world system. The scale of comparison is rendered feasible by viewing the systems in terms of the scale of information transfer in which they were embedded. We offer three brief examples of how rise and decline of the Calakmul hegemony suggests ways of thinking about the future of the world economic system: warfare, sustainable design, and climate engineering.
Date Created: 8/6/2019
Editors: Chase, Arlen F.
Scarborough, Vernon L.
Number: 24
Page Start: 101
Page End: 123
Series Editor: Goldstein, Lynne
Series Title: Archeological Papers of the American Anthropological Association