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/edu/ - Education

'The weapon of criticism cannot, of course, replace criticism of the weapon, material force must be overthrown by material force; but theory also becomes a material force as soon as it has gripped the masses.' - Karl Marx
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 No.9252[View All]

ITT post information about the history and anthropology of the New World. A lot of new anthropological work has been done in this field in recent decades that has not yet entered public consciousness.
59 posts and 76 image replies omitted. Click reply to view.


Can I hijack this thread to ask for recommendations on post-contact stuff? I've been trying to pin down the intellectual origins/justifications for Manifest Destiny and have gravitated towards learning specifically about Native American trade networks in the Great Lakes, as well as the 'Indian Wars' in general—from Metacomet to Crazy Horse. I've realized that for decades, American historiography of the 'frontier' was mired by the exceptionalism of Frederick Jackson Turner, and it wasn't until the 1980s did people really start to question it with the advent of New Western History. Where should I start?


I don´t want to be snobby, but learning spanish is a must. Spanish-language historiography is fantastic. I can recommend some books about the Hispanic Caribbean, but the trans-national team that included comittees from Cuba, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico, wrote their contribuitions in Spanish xd


The UNESCO´s collection on the history of the caribbean is also great, that one is about the entire archipelago chain and is also in english xd


I also want to see some recs for this comrade


I'm just gonna start with Richard White's The Middle Ground I guess.



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Turning out to be really good, lol


Various Inca architecture



Everyone should start with this.


The first battle between a Mesoamerican army and Spanish colonists actually happened in 1517, two years before Cortes invaded Mexico. A Spanish expedition was defeated by Chakan Putum, a Mayan city-state.
The Mayan victory was commemorated by the Bolivian and Mexican governments in 2021


That book is about the post-Columbian era though.


Leather armor made by the Mapuches. It was made from the skin of guanacos & sea lions, and later cows brought by the Spaniards.


this goes hard, did they pick up the the pike formation from the Spanish or did they develop it independently to combat cavalry?


The Spanish developed the Tercio pike formation at the time so the Mapuches could have gotten it from that. They also adopted cavalry and arquebus guns from the Spaniards


Mayan cities


just don't call them pyramids!!


They couldn't develop it independently to combat cavalry because there were no horses in the Americas before contact. It's an adaptation in response to Spanish arriving. At most they could have come to the logical conclusion that you best oppose cavalry with long pointy sticks, but given the time span they probably copied it directly. It's possible that there were Spanish defectors who brought knowledge of anti-cavalry tactics since it was pretty common for European settlers to flip sides to escape from how shitty their own culture was. That's not just some Hollywood trope.

There is probably actual research on the topic though.


wtf I had no idea their stone buildings where this color


I find this very fascinating and wish more people than Joe Rogan talked about it. Sorry you aren't getting any replies anon. I don't have anything to say either


Yeah unfortunately it's not talked about much. As far as I know I'm the only who's thought of a connection between Philipp Von Hutten's expedition and the Amazon civilization


The sad thing about this is that it kind of makes perfect sense for there to be a large and well developed society in a place like that, given the level of biodiversity and the natural river highway, but the whole "El Dorado" thing kind of poisoned the well on the topic so trying to research it gets you laughed at. Ironically a lot of it is gaining traction now because capitalism is in there deforesting the land and stumbling upon things buried by the forest.

This is the kind of thing that really raises questions about different ways technology can advance. The West didn't invent electroplating until ~1800.


A shield made by the Aztecs. It was looted by the Spaniards and gifted to the Habsburgs in the 1500s. It was eventually taken back to Mexico in the 1800s by Ferdinand Maximilian during the Mexican-French War


imagine how vibrant that thing would have been 500 years ago when it was made if the blue still looks that bright


Probably also some colors on there that faded completely and we can't see at all now.


Was the color of Mayan stone structures due to a particular stone they used or was it some kind of painted stucco?


Bioanthro major gf’s birthday this weekend. Any recs on book gifts?


if you know books she already has, you can go on amazon and look up those and then look at the recommended books (but buy them from somewhere else if possible)


Sacsayhuaman, an Inca citadel built in Cusco


more Mapuche leather armor


Norte Chico, the first civilization in the Americas. It developed on the coast of Peru over 5000 years ago



This is a bit sensationalist. The sites are in eastern Ecuador, near the Andes foothills and based around the Upano River that flows from there. Saying it's "in the Amazon" is really stretching it.

It's cool but I'm just mad at all the normalfags thinking it's some lost city deep in the jungle, when in reality it's a precursor to all the advanced cultures and civilizations that would develop in or near the Andes like the Muisca & Incas. Its discovery isn't unexpected or groundbreaking.


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>The sites are in eastern Ecuador, near the Andes foothills and based around the Upano River that flows from there. Saying it's "in the Amazon" is really stretching it.
???? The Upano river is part of the Amazon basin, which stretches across almost the entire continent, and it's part of the rainforest.

>It's cool but I'm just mad at all the normalfags thinking it's some lost city deep in the jungle, when in reality it's a precursor to all the advanced cultures and civilizations that would develop in or near the Andes like the Muisca & Incas.

It's both? The ruins were newly re-discovered, making it a lost city. And it most likely was an influencer/precursor to local cultures that thrived later on.
>Its discovery isn't unexpected or groundbreaking.
From the article:
<“It’s a gold rush scenario, especially for the Americas and the Amazon,” as Christopher Fisher, an archaeologist at Colorado State University who has scanned sites in the Americas but was not involved in this research, tells Science News. “Scientists are demonstrating conclusively that there were a lot more people in these areas, and that they significantly modified the landscape. … This is a paradigm shift in our thinking about how extensively people occupied these areas.”
<Previously, scientists assumed that ancient South Americans “lived nomadically or in tiny settlements in the Amazon,” writes BBC News, but researchers estimate the newly discovered cities housed a population “in the 10,000s if not 100,000s.”
<In recent years, lidar has been a vital tool for discovering traces of ancient Amazonian cities. Aerial laser sensing bypasses the forest’s density—which complicates and lengthens mapping by expedition—to create more accurate maps in a fraction of the time. As Fisher told Smithsonian magazine’s Brian Handwerk in 2022, the technology has proved “transformative for archaeology.” It’s helped uncover pre-Hispanic settlements in the forests of Bolivia, Brazil and Belize.
Seems pretty evident that this booming area of study is majorly changing how we understand the history of the place…


Yes the Upano river is part of the basin, but the cities were found very close to its origin near the Andes where the terrain itself isn't jungle-y.
If you can describe this material culture as "Amazonian", then I guess the Incas would also be so, as important cities like Cusco were also close to its rivers (seen on your map).
>It's both?
Keywords "deep in the jungle". Not denying that they were large urban spaces.


Some stuff from the Nazca culture. It's interesting that pre-Inca societies in Peru like the Moche and Nazca built pyramids, but the Incas themselves did not.


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>Keywords "deep in the jungle". Not denying that they were large urban spaces.
I think they mean it's in a location with heavy jungle, not that it's near the geographical middle of the Amazon…

Hard to build pyramids in the mountains. Inca sites are concentrated in very mountainous areas. Moche and Nazca are in relatively flat spots.


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I started reading more about this recently and it's interesting it's mentioned that the Incas brought back "black people" from their voyage. Apparently the farthest west they went according to this map was to Mangareva in Polynesia. But I don't think it would make sense for the Incas to call Polynesians "black" since they have a similar brown skin color to native Peruvians. It would make more sense for them to call the darker-skinned Melanesians black, but if they found Melanesians that means they went really fucking far west


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Sharing this collaborative thread (you need to make an account to view it) about Aegon and his islands being transported into Mesoamerica in 1390:

>No one has been able to find an answer to how the event known as "The Shimmering" occurred. Scholars, priests, and more have all come up with many theories and ideas, but the answer may remain rooted in mystery til the end of time.

>What is known is that on the first of January, in the year 1390 AD of the Gregorian Calendar, three islands would appear to the northwest of the Yucatan Peninsula. That the inhabitants of the islands, from their rulers to the lowest peasant, saw the sky shimmer and ripple with a strange, otherworldly light. Those who lived on the coast closest to where the event occurred likewise saw strange lights on the horizon, but lacked the means to investigate.

>History records that the impression the Targaryens and their dragons brought in the first major meeting ranged up and down the spectrum. From reverence to sheer terror, to fanatic euphoria to people fainting in shock in the streets. The display of power and might as the dragons flew circles over the city, dancing in the sky and belching forth gouts of flame, was both intimidating and mezmerizing.

>Among the members of the ruling family, the Cocoms, and their nobility, the message was a clear one. These strange new visitors were not like any they had seen before, in more ways then one. And it would be wise not to anger them, for even one of these great beasts they rode upon could likely bring the fury of the heavens to an entire city.
>The trio and their dragons landed outside the city, and it did not take long for a grand procession to exit the city to seek audience with these strangers. It is here that the first bit of miscommunication would come into play, and show that the Targaryens efforts at translation could still use much work. A great offering of sacrifices was brought forward, as a means to both appease and show reverence to those who were clearly touched by the gods if nothing else. >This however, took the Targaryens by surprise, and after a moment, prompted an argument that had the procession grow remarkably confused and even fearful, for as the three argued, the great dragons they had ridden seemed to grow restless and agitated as well.
>The locals were not the only ones worried about this, as historical details speak of the way the translators who had accompanied them worked feverishly to try and calm the situation while seeking to enlighten the rulers of the great city. It seemed that the visitors had not realized that the local peoples engaged in human sacrifice, and were divided on their opinions of it. One seemed to have no problem with it at all (and is believed to have been fine with letting the dragons eat the sacrifices outright), another seemed to find the idea abhorrent to a degree, and the one who rode the great black beast is said to have been somewhere in the middle.
>The situation would be resolved by the one calling himself Aegon, who urged the locals to carry on with their own rites and traditions as was their custom. Thus the sacrifices were killed, their blood an offering, and from there a great feast and tour was held. The the Targaryens would remain for a full week with their dragons, making efforts to learn as much as they could and fill in the many gaps in their knowledge. It was only before they departed that Aegon would request the submission of the League to him and his family. It was given without delay, though this would not be without consequences or challenge for some of the other members of the league as time went on, for already there were clear lines forming within the League and some would take offense and grow envious when they did not receive a visit in kind. (See the Mayan Insurrection, 1395-1396 for more details)



sharing this book about the Maya.


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New evidence of contact between South America and Pacific islands over 1000 years ago.
<One thousand years ago, the first settlers of Rapa Nui — also known as Easter Island — feasted on a fusion cuisine of plants native to Polynesia but also ones indigenous to South America, around 2,300 miles (3,700 kilometers) away, a new study finds.
<Researchers discovered the food remnants by identifying starch grains clinging to obsidian blades at the archaeological site of Anakena, the earliest known settlement on Rapa Nui, which was occupied from about A.D. 1000 to 1300, according to the study, published Wednesday (March 20) in the journal PLOS One. The finding suggests that the early Polynesians had regular contact with the people of South America as far back as a millennium ago.

<Starch grains from yam and taro were not a surprise, having been previously identified on Rapa Nui, but the team's discovery of breadfruit and Tahitian apple is new, as neither plant had been found on the island before, and their discovery of ginger is a first for Remote Oceania, the researchers wrote. Both breadfruit and Tahitian apple are essential Polynesian crops, probably brought on canoes by the earliest Polynesian settlers, while ginger may have been used as a medicine and spice.



I swear wasn't this always know, considering they got as far as the eastern Islands, I would assume plenty reaches south america at some point.


It's been somewhat of a controversial opinion, just like "the vikings reached canada" was. If you can reach Rapa Nui from anywhere, you can reach any of the other places that could reach Rapa Nui. It's one of the most isolated places on the planet. This just confirms that not only were there people arriving there both from east and west but that they apparently had contact with each other and probably traveled both ways. We already had DNA evidence pointing in this direction (although it also could have indicated migration along the coasts from polynesians who reached north america first). This however is a smoking gun that there was active contact and trade going on between these people in the distant past, at least half a millenium before European colonialism. It's a very "duh" kind of thing to be discovered in principle, but there's a degree of cultural bias that chafes a lot of academics to find out that actually it wasn't Europeans who were the first to interact with the New World (ignoring as always the original inhabitants there).


I don't fully buy there was active trading, but I'm sure there were some settlements that gradually assimilated to larger tribes, like the major Polynesian voyaging ended around 1300 AD for some unknown reason


>Kon-Tiki theory proven again


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<In 1992, German toxicologist Svetlana Balabanova discovered traces of cocaine, hashish and nicotine on Henut Taui's hair as well as on the hair of several other mummies of the museum,which is significant in that the only source for cocaine and nicotine had at that time been considered to be the coca and tobacco plants native to the Americas
<This result was interpreted by theorists and supporters of contacts between pre-Columbian people and ancient Egyptians, as a proof for their claims.


please don't go off the rails with this stuff and keep it to things that are substantiated. there's a Hancock thread for more open speculation about the topic >>>/hobby/36674

>However, mainstream scholars remain skeptical, and they do not see the results of these tests as proof of ancient contact between Africa and the Americas, especially because there may be possible Old World sources of cocaine and nicotine

>Two attempts to replicate Balabanova's findings of cocaine failed, suggesting "that either Balabanova and her associates are misinterpreting their results or that the samples of mummies tested by them have been mysteriously exposed to cocaine".
>a study in the journal Antiquity suggested that reports of both tobacco and cocaine in mummies "ignored their post-excavation histories" and pointed out that the mummy of Ramesses II had been moved five times between 1883 and 1975.
It's a very interesting line of evidence and while this seems like a pretty implausible explanation, there isn't as significant a body of evidence or an assurance of the evidence's legitimacy as seen here >>21814

However, the evidence of contact between South America and Rapa Nui does lend a lot of credence to the possibility of contact elsewhere and suggests more research should be done in that direction.


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>>However, mainstream scholars
stopped reading there


Werent these mummies previously displayed openly in a museum at a time when people were smoking inside?


And probably openly doing cocaine too lol

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