Teotihuacan and the Integration of Mesoamerica

Ross Hassig

in War and Society in Ancient Mesoamerica

Published by University of California Press

Published in print August 1992 | ISBN: 9780520077348
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520912281 | DOI:
Teotihuacan and the Integration of Mesoamerica

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Teotihuacan emerged as the first great empire in Mesoamerica. It also penetrated far north into the desert and south into the Maya area. Its economy penetrated much of Mesoamerica and drew in ethnic foreigners. The prominence of atlatls at Teotihuacan reflects a major change in wars and how they were fought in Mesoamerica. Confronting Cholula militarily bore substantial risks for Teotihuacan. Teotihuacan was large enough to dominate any of its potential competitors, but controlling a vast area was beyond its means. Colonial control had several advantages that complemented the limitations of Teotihuacan expansion. Despite creating connections between Teotihuacan and more distant areas, the corridors were not equally accessible to foreign groups. The Teotihuacan corridor sped transit to distant areas without simultaneously opening Teotihuacan up to threats returning along the same conduit. Teotihuacan's approach to imperial domination and expansion led in the greatest degree of political integration yet achieved in Mesoamerica.

Keywords: Teotihuacan expansion; Mesoamerica; atlatls; wars; Cholula; colonial control; Teotihuacan corridor

Chapter.  6509 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Anthropology

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