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Book Cover
Author Hassig, Ross, 1945- author

Title Time, history, and belief in Aztec and Colonial Mexico / Ross Hassig
Edition First edition
Published Austin : University of Texas Press, 2001
Online access available from:
ACLS Humanities E-Book    View Resource Record  


Description 1 online resource (xv, 220 pages) : illustrations
Summary Annotation Based on their enormously complex calendars that recorded cycles of many kinds, the Aztecs and other ancient Mesoamerican civilizations are generally believed to have had a cyclical, rather than linear, conception of time and history. This boldly revisionist book challenges that understanding. Ross Hassig offers convincing evidence that for the Aztecs time was predominantly linear, that it was manipulated by the state as a means of controlling a dispersed tribute empire, and that the Conquest cut off state control and severed the unity of the calendar, leaving only the lesser cycles. From these, he asserts, we have inadequately reconstructed the pre-Columbian calendar and so misunderstood the Aztec conception of time and history. Hassig first presents the traditional explanation of the Aztec calendrical system and its ideological functions and then marshals contrary evidence to argue that the Aztec elite deliberately used calendars and timekeeping to achieve practical political ends. He further traces how the Conquest played out in the temporal realm as Spanish conceptions of time partially displaced the Aztec ones. His findings promise to revolutionize our understanding of how the Aztecs and other Mesoamerican societies conceived of time and history
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 193-209) and index
Notes Master and use copy. Digital master created according to Benchmark for Faithful Digital Reproductions of Monographs and Serials, Version 1. Digital Library Federation, December 2002. MiAaHDL
Print version record
Subject Aztec calendar.
Aztec cosmology.
Aztecs -- History.
Manuscripts, Nahuatl.
Time -- Social aspects -- Mexico.
Mexico -- History -- Spanish colony, 1540-1810.
Form Electronic book
LC no. 00041783
ISBN 0292731396 (cloth ; alk. paper)
029273140X (paperback; alk. paper)
0292797958 (electronic bk.)
9780292731394 (cloth ; alk. paper)
9780292731400 (paperback; alk. paper)
9780292797956 (electronic bk.)