The Aztecs: A Very Short Introduction

The Aztecs: A Very Short Introduction

Davíd Carrasco / May 22, 2019

The Aztecs A Very Short Introduction This Very Short Introduction employs the disciplines of history religious studies and anthropology as it illuminates the complexities of Aztec life Readers meet a people highly skilled in sculpture

  • Title: The Aztecs: A Very Short Introduction
  • Author: Davíd Carrasco
  • ISBN: 9780195379389
  • Page: 400
  • Format: Paperback
  • This Very Short Introduction employs the disciplines of history, religious studies, and anthropology as it illuminates the complexities of Aztec life Readers meet a people highly skilled in sculpture, astronomy, city planning, poetry, and philosophy, who were also profoundly committed to cosmic regeneration through the thrust of the ceremonial knife and through warfare DThis Very Short Introduction employs the disciplines of history, religious studies, and anthropology as it illuminates the complexities of Aztec life Readers meet a people highly skilled in sculpture, astronomy, city planning, poetry, and philosophy, who were also profoundly committed to cosmic regeneration through the thrust of the ceremonial knife and through warfare David Carrasco looks beyond Spanish accounts that have colored much of the Western narrative to let Aztec voices speak about their origin stories, the cosmic significance of their capital city, their methods of child rearing, and the contributions women made to daily life and the empire Carrasco discusses the arrival of the Spaniards, contrasts Aztec mythical traditions about the origins of their city with actual urban life in Mesoamerica, and outlines the rise of the Aztec empire He also explores Aztec religion, which provided both justification for and alternatives to warfare, sacrifice, and imperialism, and he sheds light on Aztec poetry, philosophy, painting, and especially monumental sculpture and architecture He concludes by looking at how the Aztecs have been portrayed in Western thought, art, film, and literature as well as in Latino culture and arts.

    Aztecs The Aztecs z t k s were a Mesoamerican culture that flourished in central Mexico in the post classic period from to The Aztec peoples included different ethnic groups of central Mexico, particularly those groups who spoke the Nahuatl language and who dominated large parts of Mesoamerica from the th to the th centuries Aztec culture was organized into city states

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    About "Davíd Carrasco"

      • Davíd Carrasco

        Dav d L Carrasco is currently Neil L Rudenstine Professor of Latin America Studies at Harvard He is a Mexican American academic historian of religion, anthropologist, and a Mesoamericanist scholar who has published widely on the Aztecs.


    356 Comments

    1. I do dearly love these little gems from Oxford University Press. In this case, I happen to admire the author, too, having taken one of his classes at Harvard in 2015. Davíd Carrasco is a gifted teacher, a warm human being, and, of course, a great expert in this subject. I read this book as part of a tear I'm on to read histories of Mexico and particularly of the Mexican-American border. As expected, I learned some things from this slim volume: For one, the Aztecs were preceded by even older civ [...]


    2. Ethusiastic short history of the Aztecs. Lots of quotes from primary sources. Highly readable, although the names can get confusing if you're unfamiliar with Aztec history. (Still, if you have to start getting familiar somewhere, this seems like a good place to start!) I enjoyed it!


    3. The author's enthusiasm for the topic is evident throughout the book and the book excels at vivid descriptions of Aztec rituals, beliefs, and cosmology. But it's easy to get lost in the details. I would recommend looking for something else if you want a linear chronology.ayearinreligion.wordpress



    4. Parts were interesting but there were almost too many details for a book that is supposed to be a very short introduction.



    5. When the Spaniards landed in Mexico at the beginning of the sixteenth century they encountered an advanced culture and civilization that was on par with some of the most sophisticated civilizations of the “Old World.” The center of that civilization (or rather civilizations) was located at the place of today’s Mexico City, and the people who had ruled in this place were known as Aztecs. Aztecs were fierce warriors, and their entire culture was permeated with This books aims to give a fairl [...]


    6. Generally an interesting and informative introduction to Aztec history and culture. However, there were a few areas that made me wonder about the accuracy of the information, at least in parts. For one, there is a description of the Aztec conception of divine powers as being almost intrusions from another reality, inhabiting physical objects as though they were shells, and accessing our reality through double-helix-shaped portals called malinalli. This sounds really interesting, and I feel like [...]


    7. I only studied the Aztecs briefly at Primary School and with a passing glance during a Uni module on 16th Century European colonialism/globalisation, so most of what I remember is from Horrible Histories. As such I really appreciated the long view taken by this VSI, from historical interpretations of foundation myth to a continuing cultural presence in Mexico and beyond. Although there was the requisite space dedicated to human sacrifice and the surrounding historiography I was pleased to find c [...]


    8. It's slightly irritating that introductions about the Aztecs always end up as historical accounts of the Spanish invasion and take over of Mexico. Unfortunately, this is an inevitable result of the fact that we only know anything about the Aztecs through the distorting lens of the Spanish accounts, as well as a few physical remains recovered by archaeologists. Another result is that the Aztecs have a disproportionately large and mostly undeserved place in popular consciousness about the peoples [...]


    9. muito vago. davíd carrasco conta que o leitor já tenha conhecimentos base sobre o império asteca, por isso opta por só falar das origens (de uma forma um pouco confusa) já depois de apresentar o ponto de vista dos espanhóis quando estes chegaram a tenochtitlan.o melhor deste livro é mesmo a abordagem das teorias criadas pelas controvérsias acerca da origens dos humanos e das sociedades na mesoamérica. tal como o capítulo referente aos sacrifícios e aos rituais que envolviam canibalism [...]


    10. A brief and extremely readable summary of various aspects do the history and culture of the Mexica. It does have to achieve a broad overview of the cultural and religious history of the Mexica, but it is so broad that the reader may have a hard time connecting. That said, the further reading section is excellent to build on knowledge gained and the liberal use of primary sources in translation largely compensate for the breadth of the material covered.


    11. VSI at its finest - this was a great introduction into who the Aztecs really were, and their abiding influence on Mexican life and culture. It made me want to hop on to next flight to Mexico City to explore the ruins and museums.



    12. The VSI series can be very hit and miss. This one is definitely a hit. Really comprensive. Really well written. Really enjoyable.




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