This study of Acámbaro and its immediate vicinity represents a continuation of the author’s research in the region of the pre-Hispanic Tarascan state (with Helen Pollard). The body of work coming from these two individuals is a welcome addition to the Mesoamericanist literature since there has been so much neglect of the Tarascan state. The goal of Acámbaro is to contribute to an expanded understanding of the nature of the Tarascan-Aztec frontier and its dynamics. This is accomplished primarily through the use of ethnohistoric information and early colonial documents. Additionally, a small amount of archaeological research was conducted, including a surface survey of the site’s immediate vicinity, surface mapping and collections of the main site, and a few small test excavations. However, these archaeological sources are not well tied to the main conclusions of the report, and tend to serve as only a kind of general background to the discussion based on documentary materials. To me, the most interesting part of the report is the discussion of the string of settlements constituting the front line of Tarascan defense against the Aztecs, how they were placed relative to topographic features and to one another, and the related discussion of Tarascan frontier strategies. A strong editor would have made the text more readable and less error prone.
Book Review| August 01 1986
Acámbaro: Frontier Settlement on the Tarascan-Aztec Border
Acámbaro: Frontier Settlement on the Tarascan-Aztec Border. By Gorenstein, Shirley. With contributions by Chodoff, David, Hyslop, John, Pollard, Helen Perlstein, Snarskis, Michael, and Wilson, Lee Anne.
Vanderbilt University Publications in Anthropology,
Figures. Charts. Notes. Bibliography. Appendixes. Pp.
Richard E. Blanton
Hispanic American Historical Review (1986) 66 (3): 589.
Richard E. Blanton; Acámbaro: Frontier Settlement on the Tarascan-Aztec Border. Hispanic American Historical Review 1 August 1986; 66 (3): 589. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00182168-66.3.589
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