Sponsored by: Gregg County Historical Museum
For 27 years, Maya Research Progress has conducted annual fieldwork in Belize aimed at understanding how ancient Maya cities were organized and how their agricultural economics operated. The MRP team includes scholars from many countries and academic fields and this presentation will summarize some of the their work for nearly three decades. While much of our work has focused on the towering public buildings-pyramids and large-masonry elite residents, in 2016, we had a “game-changer” season. We flew a large-scale Lidar remote sensing mission discovering vast expanses of ancient ditched agricultural fields and walled residential compounds. This changed how we view the scale of agricultural production and land ownership and will be the focus of our publications for the next several years.
Tom Guderjan is Professor of Anthropology and Chair of Department of Social Sciences and Director of the Center for Social Sciences Research at the University of Texas at Tyler. He has directed fieldwork in Belize since 1988 (Yep–he’s OLD!) and recently co-editor with Jennifer Mathews of The Value of Things: Prehistoric to Contemporary Maya Commodities. (University of Arizona Press, 2017) and editor of Life, Wealth, Social Organization and Ritual in the ancient Maya city of Blue Creek, Belize (BAR Press, Oxford, England, 2016).
Donations for our speaker are suggested. 6:30-7:30 p.m. in the Ann Lacy Crain Exhibit Center.