The articles gathered here address a society that is both fascinating and notoriously complicated. The authors’ finely drawn portraits of local history often run counter to the received wisdom regarding national events. Their evidence will intrigue specialists, and several articles will also engage undergraduates. For example, Isabel Rodas’s careful archival work on Patzicía allows her to reconstruct patterns of wealth and privilege across four generations of families that were direct and legitimate heirs to the conquistadors. Yet distance from the colonial capital and failure to maintain alliances with the political elite caused them, over time, to shed their Spanish identity. Instead, they acquired land by “incorporating themselves clandestinely into the social space of the indigenous communities,” reidentifying as ladino—a social category that included mestizos, Afro-Guatemalans, and Mayans who had fled their communities to escape labor and tribute burdens. Edgar Esquit studies the same municipality following the advent of the coffee...

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