Two generations of ethnohistorical scholarship have successfully challenged the notion that the Spanish conquest was a cultural cataclysm for Mesoamerica’s indigenous peoples. The proof is in the provincial, municipal, and village archives of Mexico as well as repositories in Europe and North America, which contain a treasure trove of colonial-era codices, lienzos, maps, and native-language written records. The question of how native people modified their methods for recording the past in response to pressures imposed by conquest, colonialism, and evangelization, and to what end, has occupied center stage in this vein of scholarship. Amos Megged and Stephanie Wood’s rich collection of essays, organized around the theme of social memory, provides an overview of the state of the field through an interdisciplinary methodology and a longue durée approach.

Wood acknowledges in the introduction that the volume owes its primary intellectual debts to James...

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