ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Ancient Americas

Updated on September 10, 2012
history troubles
history troubles | Source

The Cities of Ancient Mexico and other books like it

True enough, for someone to sit down and read a non-fiction history book is not going to change the world. But there are moments of reflection during which one can well imagine a heaven on earth, or close to it, meaning this pathetic vale of tears, not the happier version to come. And these passing day-dreams about the future seem often enough to be rooted in a more enhanced appreciation of the past, that perennial prisoner of current affairs, as if not until this very moment has everything yet been so fully understood. That is the experience one undergoes in delving into The Cities of Ancient Mexico, by Jeremy A. Sabloff, an older book, or other books like it. So much history across the Atlantic is studied practically to death, while history inside our own confines is totally ignored. It should be plain by now that the Americas, such as they are, are not extensions of Europe transplanted from one continent to another. Rather, today's events in general are instead the continuation of an ongoing experience whose record is largely ignored at every level, top to bottom and all the way across. In other words, there is no part I & part II to the Americas, from ancient times to the present. They were in motion when Columbus arrived and are still just as active.

From 1200 to 600 BC, to toss around a few facts and figures, Olmecs prospered in what is now Mexico. With their decline, the people of Oaxaca, Morelos, and the Valley of Mexico constructed a number of cities. They may only have been fancy agricultural communities, but impressive structures were built and unconventional mathematical systems used to produce two, inter-related calendars. Speculation about what went on in the Americas before the arrival of Columbus is well off the map. Erich Von Daniken is positive space travelers landed and other links have been entertained having to do with the Japanese, Chinese, West Africans, the Island Empire of Atlantis, and, from the Book of Mormon, Jerusalem. The point is, however, that more studies should be encouraged. The accepted dismissal of American history prior to 1492 is an injustice that warrants correction.

It appears that from the 9th century until the 12th century Aztecs, Mayan culture thrived in Mexico. Its Egyptian-like architecture in the Puuic region in the Yucatan Peninsula still commands a substantial piece of the tourist market. A great deal has been made about human sacrifice and pagan rites that the holy fathers were so adamant about stamping out. And there are a number of memoirs written that condemn the Native population for the usual characteristics attributed to hated individuals or groups. But by and large, the traits that stand out most are stability and durability. Cultures burn bright over long periods of time before they begin to dim and falter. If the pre-Columbians did not build the equivalent of elaborate churches or spawn a proliferation of nations, each set against the other, as was the case in Europe, they were none the worse off for it.

There is some mystery as to why certain groups became ascendent, and then, conversely, declined and fell. The Palace at Palenque both impresses and depresses scholars, who think it comparable to works in ancient Greece and Rome, but would not have dwelt within, had they the opportunity. And Mexico was not the only stronghold of high levels of social interaction. South America was always a true competitor. North America, mainly in the shape and form of the U.S., commands worldwide respect in terms of military might. But domestically, it is all a matter of shifting sands within. Only on election day can a concerted effort pull together the salient, diverse, and warring factions. Thus, there are other reasons besides redressing an historical imbalance to study the Americas, that is, in the search for sources of inspiration to take the place of those that have run dry.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)