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Classic Maya State, Urbanism, and Exchange: Chipped Stone Evidence of the Copán Valley and Its Hinterland
Vol. 103, No. 2 (Jun., 2001), pp. 346-360
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/683470
Page Count: 15
You can always find the topics here!Topics: Obsidian, Mayan culture, Material culture, Lowlands, Urbanism, Mayan history, Flaked stone artifacts, Native American studies, History of technology, Cities
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In this article I use quantitative data from 91,916 pieces of chipped stone artifacts from the Copán Valley and its hinterland in Honduras to understand better the nature and role of exchange in the development of a Classic Maya state-level society. The results of this study suggest that intraregional exchange was more crucial for state development than was longdistance exchange. The management of procurement and exchange of utilitarian commodities, such as Ixtepeque obsidian blade cores, along with other factors, played a significant role in the development of the Copán state. In contrast to other major Maya lowland states, the Copán state directly obtained obsidian blade cores from nearby sources, distributed them to local leaders at Copán, and exported them to local rulers in neighboring regions. In this sense, the Classic Copán state maintained a centralized and integrated political and economic organization based on far more than kinship, ideology, and ritual.
American Anthropologist © 2001 American Anthropological Association