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2000 Years of Mayan Literature

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Review-A-Day

"Dennis Tedlock writes, to understand this writing as art. 'Much decipherment has taken place but very little in the way of translation,' he explains in he introduction to his definitive compendium, 2000 Years of Mayan Literature.... Richly illustrated, the book insists that we must 'take a further step and proclaim that literature existed in the Americas before Europeans got here.'" Benjamin Moser, Harper's Magazine (Read the entire Harper's review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Mayan literature is among the oldest in the world, spanning an astonishing two millennia from deep pre-Columbian antiquity to the present day. Here, for the first time, is a fully illustrated survey, from the earliest hieroglyphic inscriptions to the works of later writers using the Roman alphabet. Dennis Tedlock — ethnographer, linguist, poet, and award-winning author — draws on decades of living and working among the Maya to assemble this groundbreaking book, which is the first to treat ancient Mayan texts as literature.

Tedlock considers the texts chronologically. He establishes that women were among the ancient writers and challenges the idea that Mayan rulers claimed the status of gods. 2000 Years of Mayan Literature expands our understanding and appreciation not only of Mayan literature but of indigenous American literature in its entirety.

Review:

"If you're drawn to global cultures, languages and mythology, this is a cool book to explore." Read the Spirit

Review:

"A hefty scholarly work that reads like serialized magazine articles . . . quite accessible to the general reader." Albuquerque Journal

Review:

"Imaginatively written, superbly illustrated, beautifully produced and, above all, highly authoritative. . . . For those seriously interested in Mayan writing, the book is a must-buy." Current World Archaeology

Synopsis:

2000 Years of Mayan Literature expands our understanding and appreciation not only of Mayan literature but of indigenous American literature in its entirety.

Synopsis:

In this innovative study, Positive Pollutions and Cultural Toxins, John Blair Gamber examines urbanity and the results of urban living—traffic, garbage, sewage, waste, and pollution—arguing for a new recognition of all forms of human detritus as part of the natural world and thus for a broadening of our understanding of environmental literature.
 
 
While much of the discourse surrounding the United States idealistic and nostalgic views of itself privileges “clean” living (primarily in rural, small-town, and suburban settings), representations of rurality and urbanity by Chicanas/Chicanos, African Americans, Asian Americans, and Native Americans, on the other hand, complicate such generalization. Gamber widens our understanding of current ecocritical debates by examining texts by such authors as Octavia Butler, Louise Erdrich, Alejandro Morales, Gerald Vizenor, and Karen Tei Yamashita that draw on the physical signs of human corporeality to refigure cities and urbanity as natural. He demonstrates how ethnic American literature reclaims waste objects and waste spaces—likening pollution to miscegenation—as a method to revalue cast-off and marginalized individuals and communities. Positive Pollutions and Cultural Toxins explores the conjunction of, and the frictions between, twentieth-century U.S. postcolonial studies, race studies, urban studies, and ecocriticism, and works to refigure this portrayal of urban spaces.

Synopsis:

The story of the Blind Man and the Loon is a living Native folktale about a blind man who is betrayed by his mother or wife but whose vision is magically restored by a kind loon. Variations of this tale are told by Native storytellers all across Alaska, arctic Canada, Greenland, the Northwest Coast, and even into the Great Basin and the Great Plains. As the story has traveled through cultures and ecosystems over many centuries, individual storytellers have added cultural and local ecological details to the tale, creating countless variations.

In The Blind Man and the Loon: The Story of a Tale, folklorist Craig Mishler goes back to 1827, tracing the storyand#8217;s emergence across Greenland and North America in manuscripts, books, and in the visual arts and other media such as film, music, and dance theater. Examining and comparing the storyand#8217;s variants and permutations across cultures in detail, Mishler brings the individual storyteller into his analysis of how the tale changed over time, considering how storytellers and the oral tradition function within various societies. Two maps unequivocally demonstrate the routes the story has traveled. The result is a masterful compilation and analysis of Native oral traditions that sheds light on how folktales spread and are adapted by widely diverse cultures.

About the Author

Dennis Tedlock is Distinguished Professor and Endowed McNulty Chair of English and Research Professor of Anthropology at the University at Buffalo of the State University of New York. He won the PEN Translation Prize for Popol Vuh: The Mayan Book of the Dawn of Life and the Glories of Gods and Kings. For his other books he has received awards from the American Folklore Society, the Society for Linguistic Anthropology, the Society for Humanistic Anthropology, and the Association of American Publishers.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Note on the Pronunciation of Mayan Words

Introduction

PART ONE

1. Learning to Read

2. Early Mayan Writing

3. The Skilled Observer from Maxam

4. From the Time of Gods to the Time of Lords

5. Cormorant and Her Three Sons

6. Temple of the Sun- Eyed Shield

7. Temple of the Tree of Yellow Corn

8. Lady Shark Fin and the Eve ning Star

9. The Rattlesnakes of the City of Three Stones

10. Drawing and Designing with Words

11. Graffiti

12. The Question of the Beginning and End of Time

13. The Mouth of the Well of the Itza

14. Writing on the Pages of Books

15. Signs of the Times

16. Moon Woman Meets the Stars

17. The Power of the Great Star

18. Thunderstorm

19. Diagrams of the Days

PART TWO

20. The Alphabet Arrives in the Lowlands

21. The Books of Chilam Balam

22. Understanding the Language of Suyua

23. Song of the Birth of the Twenty Days

24. Conversations with Madness

25. The Alphabet Arrives in the Highlands

26. A Way to See the Dawn of Life

27. Blood Moon Becomes a Trickster

28. The Death of Death

29. The Human Work, the Human Design

30. We Saw It All, Oh My Sons

31. The Count of Days

32. Man of Rabinal

Epilogue

Notes

Bibliography

List of Mayan Texts and Translations

List of Figures

List of Maps

Illustration Credits

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780520232211
Author:
Tedlock, Dennis
Publisher:
University of California Press
Author:
Mishler, Craig
Author:
Ridington, Robin
Author:
Gamber, John Blair
Subject:
Mayan literature -- History and criticism.
Subject:
Mayan literature
Subject:
Native American
Subject:
American - General
Subject:
Latin America - General
Subject:
Latin america
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Hispanic American
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Series:
Postwestern Horizons
Publication Date:
20100131
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
78 b/w photographs, 291 line illustratio
Pages:
480
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
History and Social Science » World History » Latin America
Humanities » Literary Criticism » General

2000 Years of Mayan Literature New Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$71.75 Backorder
Product details 480 pages University of California Press - English 9780520232211 Reviews:
"Review A Day" by , "Dennis Tedlock writes, to understand this writing as art. 'Much decipherment has taken place but very little in the way of translation,' he explains in he introduction to his definitive compendium, 2000 Years of Mayan Literature.... Richly illustrated, the book insists that we must 'take a further step and proclaim that literature existed in the Americas before Europeans got here.'" (Read the entire Harper's review)
"Review" by , "If you're drawn to global cultures, languages and mythology, this is a cool book to explore."
"Review" by , "A hefty scholarly work that reads like serialized magazine articles . . . quite accessible to the general reader."
"Review" by , "Imaginatively written, superbly illustrated, beautifully produced and, above all, highly authoritative. . . . For those seriously interested in Mayan writing, the book is a must-buy."
"Synopsis" by , 2000 Years of Mayan Literature expands our understanding and appreciation not only of Mayan literature but of indigenous American literature in its entirety.
"Synopsis" by ,
In this innovative study, Positive Pollutions and Cultural Toxins, John Blair Gamber examines urbanity and the results of urban living—traffic, garbage, sewage, waste, and pollution—arguing for a new recognition of all forms of human detritus as part of the natural world and thus for a broadening of our understanding of environmental literature.
 
 
While much of the discourse surrounding the United States idealistic and nostalgic views of itself privileges “clean” living (primarily in rural, small-town, and suburban settings), representations of rurality and urbanity by Chicanas/Chicanos, African Americans, Asian Americans, and Native Americans, on the other hand, complicate such generalization. Gamber widens our understanding of current ecocritical debates by examining texts by such authors as Octavia Butler, Louise Erdrich, Alejandro Morales, Gerald Vizenor, and Karen Tei Yamashita that draw on the physical signs of human corporeality to refigure cities and urbanity as natural. He demonstrates how ethnic American literature reclaims waste objects and waste spaces—likening pollution to miscegenation—as a method to revalue cast-off and marginalized individuals and communities. Positive Pollutions and Cultural Toxins explores the conjunction of, and the frictions between, twentieth-century U.S. postcolonial studies, race studies, urban studies, and ecocriticism, and works to refigure this portrayal of urban spaces.
"Synopsis" by , The story of the Blind Man and the Loon is a living Native folktale about a blind man who is betrayed by his mother or wife but whose vision is magically restored by a kind loon. Variations of this tale are told by Native storytellers all across Alaska, arctic Canada, Greenland, the Northwest Coast, and even into the Great Basin and the Great Plains. As the story has traveled through cultures and ecosystems over many centuries, individual storytellers have added cultural and local ecological details to the tale, creating countless variations.

In The Blind Man and the Loon: The Story of a Tale, folklorist Craig Mishler goes back to 1827, tracing the storyand#8217;s emergence across Greenland and North America in manuscripts, books, and in the visual arts and other media such as film, music, and dance theater. Examining and comparing the storyand#8217;s variants and permutations across cultures in detail, Mishler brings the individual storyteller into his analysis of how the tale changed over time, considering how storytellers and the oral tradition function within various societies. Two maps unequivocally demonstrate the routes the story has traveled. The result is a masterful compilation and analysis of Native oral traditions that sheds light on how folktales spread and are adapted by widely diverse cultures.

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