The purpose of this volume is to make accessible samples of the works of Soviet scholars relating to the “civilizations of ancient America.” It begins with a brief history of Soviet research, as it developed from the translation of works of Bernal Díaz del Castillo in 1925 to original publications applying Marxist theory to New World societies. The following nine chapters discuss the decipherment of Maya writing, experimental reconstruction of Olmec mythology, Maya city-states, the history of ancient civilizations in the Central Andes, cooperative labor in the Inca state, the Mochica tradition, the Quechua-language drama Apu Ollantay,” the formation of Muisca states, and aboriginal Haitian social organization inferred from ethnohistorical records. The limited access of the authors to primary field data, the time elapsed since the articles were written, and the Marxist ideological perspective combine to make the volume interesting primarily for the insight it offers into the methods and concerns of Soviet specialists in the prehistory of Latin America.