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Mapping the Americas What was going on in the Americas during 600- 1450?

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Presentation on theme: "Mapping the Americas What was going on in the Americas during 600- 1450?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Mapping the Americas What was going on in the Americas during ?

2 Geographic Challenges

3 South America too… Despite enduring differences in language and an absence of regional political integration (likely due to geography), there were things all Mesoamerican cultures of this time period had in common: Religion and belief systemsReligion and belief systems Social structuresSocial structures Material cultureMaterial culture

4 Placing civilizations in appropriate place and time…  n=1&sub_section=1 n=1&sub_section=1

5 Major Mesoamerican Civilizations, 1000 B.C.E.-1519

6 Teotihuacan – Classical Era (earlier of the two eras we will cover today) Teotihuacan = large Mesoamerican cityTeotihuacan = large Mesoamerican city 450–600 c.e. 450–600 c.e. Population of 125,000 to 150,000 inhabitantsPopulation of 125,000 to 150,000 inhabitants Dominated by religious structures, including pyramids and temples where human sacrifice was carried outDominated by religious structures, including pyramids and temples where human sacrifice was carried out

7 Teotihuacan (con’t)  The growth of Teotihuacan was made possible by forced relocation of farm families to the city and by agricultural innovations, including irrigation works and chinampas (“floating gardens”) that increased production and thus supported a larger population.  The elite lived in residential compounds separate from the commoners, and controlled the state bureaucracy, tax collection, and commerce.  Teotihuacan appears to have been ruled by alliances of wealthy families rather than by kings  Elites controlled land, farming, taxation in Teotihuacan  Teotihuacan collapse: ~750 c.e.  Mismanagement of resources and conflict within the elite, or as a result of invasion?

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9 The 411 on The Mayan  A single culture living in present-day Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, the Yucatan Peninsula  Various kingdoms fought for regional dominance  City-states were central to the political organization  Agriculture was successful due Mayan’s ability to drain swamps and create elevated fields  Military forces fought for captives; not territory  Why?  Captives were sacrificed to gods

10 Big Picture  Teotihuacan, biggest, early Mesoamerican city was ruled by elites– Classical Era  Impressive urban architecture  Collapsed in 750 CE = mismanagement by elites? Mayans:  Mayans shared single culture: city-states, religious-inspired architecture  Maya devised elaborate calendars system, concept of zero, form of hieroglyphic writing  Human sacrifice used by Maya

11 Great Plaza at Tikal

12 Ballgame

13 Palace doorway lintel, Maya Palace doorway is symbolic of the peak of Maya civilization (ca ) Attained a level of intellectual and artistic development equaled by no other Amerindian people. Attained a level of intellectual and artistic development equaled by no other Amerindian people. Developed a sophisticated system of writingDeveloped a sophisticated system of writing Invented a calendar more accurate than the European Gregorian calendar Invented a calendar more accurate than the European Gregorian calendar Made advances in mathematics that Europeans did not match for several centuries Made advances in mathematics that Europeans did not match for several centuries

14 Mayan and Aztec Cities

15 Mayan and Aztec Cities continued  x.html x.html  

16 Tenochtitlan – The Aztecs

17 Agriculture and Trade  The Aztecs increased agricultural production in the capital area by undertaking land reclamation projects and constructing irrigated fields and chinampas. Nonetheless, grain and other food tribute met nearly one-quarter of the capital’s food requirements.  Merchants who were distinct from and subordinate to the political elite controlled long- distance trade. The technology of trade was simple: no wheeled vehicles, draft animals, or money was used. Goods were carried by human porters and exchanged through barter.

18 Chinampas

19 Goddess Tlazolteotl

20 Big Picture– Post Classic Period  In post classic era, professional militaries allowed Mesoamerican elites to create empires  1 st Toltecs; capital Tula  After Toltecs, the Aztecs gradually built an Empire from their island center of Tenochtitlan, which became powerful from forced transfers of labor and goods of defeated peoples (tribute system!)  The Aztec religion, reflected a permanent state of war, demanding increasing human sacrifice  Aztec merchants controlled long-distance trade, and Aztec women had substantial power

21 Land of the Anasazi (northern people, present-day USA)

22 Mesa Verde Cliff Dwelling

23 Andean Civilizations, 200 B.C.E

24 Incan Empire—High in the Andes

25 Expansion of the Empire

26 Road System

27 Machu Picchu  n.html n.html

28 Big Picture- Andean Civilizations  Andean societies developed despite geographic challenges  Arid coastlands  Cold highlands  Tropical rainforest  Ayllu (clans) and mit’a (laborers) provided the social base for Andean socio-political organization  Moche developed a powerful state based on irrigated agriculture, exchange b/t ecological regions, and powerful religious elite  Incans: From small chiefdom to power military empire  Roads, irrigation networks, terracing  Broken by Civil War though on the eve of European arrival

29 Inca Tunic

30 Question  The Inca civilization was originally based on A. control of religious institutions. B. military dominance. C. reciprocal gift giving and the redistribution of textiles. D. the control of jade, like the Olmec civilization.

31 Answer  The Inca civilization was originally based on A. control of religious institutions. B. military dominance. C. reciprocal gift giving and the redistribution of textiles. (correct) D. the control of jade, like the Olmec civilization. Hint: See page 360.

32 Question  Mesoamerica was never united A. politically. B. economically. C. religiously. D. culturally.

33 Answer  Mesoamerica was never united A. politically. (correct) B. economically. C. religiously. D. culturally. Hint: See page 340.

34 Question  The Maya cosmos was divided into three layers A. that connected along a vertical axis that traced the course of the moon. B. that connected along a horizontal axis that traced the course of life and death. C. that connected along a horizontal axis that traced the course of the sun. D. that connected along a vertical axis that traced the course of the sun.

35 Question  The Mesoamerican ball game A. was played only by women. B. exemplified the frivolous lifestyle of elites. C. had deep religious meaning. D. was meant to entertain, not enlighten.

36 Answer  The Mesoamerican ball game A. was played only by women. B. exemplified the frivolous lifestyle of elites. C. had deep religious meaning. (correct) D. was meant to entertain, not enlighten. Hint: See page 346.

37 Timing? (It’s confusing, huh?)  Early, early (BCE) = Olmecs, Chavins  100 CE = Teotihuacan temple complex built  250 CE = Maya early classic period begins  ~750 CE= Teotihuacan destroyed  CE = Maya centers abandoned, end of classic period  Start of post classic period  968 CE = Toltec capital of Tula founded  1175 Tula destroyed  1325 Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan (“teno-cheat-lan”) founded  1430s Inca expansion begins  1500 decline of “northern peoples” society: “Anasazi”  Inca conquer Ecuador  Europeans arrive


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