The Moral Community of Pa’ka’n during the Classic Period

Author(s): Edwin Roman-Ramirez

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "Decipherment, Digs, and Discourse: Honoring Stephen Houston's Contributions to Maya Archaeology" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

Stephen Houston’s collaborative article on the moral community and changes in settlement at Piedras Negras, Guatemala proposed that long-term Precolumbian settlement changes should not simply be analyzed in terms of "agricultural potential, land tenure, and natural increase," but should consider beliefs and morality as well. This new framework for studying the rise, life, and abandonment of cities is important because it demonstrates that rulers and the nobility played important roles not only in community development, but also in processes of migration and abandonment. In the Buenavista Valley, evidence shows that dynastic rulers of the Pa’ka’n kingdom were decision makers that designed the urban landscape and were responsible for shifting their communities to new locales with new centers of power. This paper, inspired by the concept of the moral community, will explore these changes through time based on thirteen seasons of research, many of them led by Houston himself, centered at El Zotz and surrounding sites

Cite this Record

The Moral Community of Pa’ka’n during the Classic Period. Edwin Roman-Ramirez. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 451708)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -94.197; min lat: 16.004 ; max long: -86.682; max lat: 21.984 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 24156