Conquest of Mexico and Central America Paper Topics

Conquest of Mexico and Central America Paper Topics

Visual Arts

Pre-Columbian Art of Ancient Mexico

The research papers I have assigned for Visual art are intended to allow students to explore some area of Pre-Columbian art, archaeology, and history in greater depth than class discussions permit.The list provided below is intended primarily to give you a start on generating ideas. Choose an area that you are interested in learning more about, and please make sure that you stay within the topical range covered by this course!Your paper must deal with a Pre-Columbian topic, and some aspect of art and archaeology.

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Term papers should be approximately 8-12 double-spaced typed or word processed pages. Handwritten papers will not be accepted, and please observe the limits on length!At least ten (10) sources should be used, which may include books, journals, videotapes, films, etc. Readings from your textbooks are acceptable for inclusion in your bibliography, but you must seek others as well!I recommend a visit to the reference section of the library in order to familiarize yourself with art and anthropology resources, such as the Humanities IndexArt Index, and Anthropology Abstracts. I also recommend that you consult The Handbook of Middle American Indians, ed. by Robert Wauchope, as you begin your research.Specialized dictionaries and encyclopedias on Mesoamerican art and archaeology can also be found in the reference section.These include Gods and Symbols of Ancient Mexico and the Maya, by Mary Miller and Karl Taube, and Ancient Mexico and Central America: An Ecyclopedia, edited by David Webster and Susan Toby Evans.

Helpful articles can be found in a variety of journals and popular publications, including American AntiquityLatin American AntiquityAncient MesoamericaJournal of Field ArchaeologyAmerican Anthropologist, and Archaeology Magazine. Other helpful journals include RES: Anthropology and Aesthetics, the Journal of Latin American Lore, and the National Geographic Research Reports. Articles can be found in the current issues of these and other important journals on the shelves in the library’s periodicals section.For journal issues older than two years, articles are often available for download by accessing such online databases as JStor, Web of Science, Academic Search Complete, and others that you will have access to as a UCSD student.For these sources, search the UCSD libraries main webpage, or google UCSD libraries and follow the link for “find articles.” You also have access to interlibrary loan using Melvyl, which searches all the UC campus libraries, and through the Circuit, for campus libraries in the San Diego area.

You can also find some materials via google searches for authors, titles, and subjects, especially using Google Scholar. Bibliographies and references cited in the back of your textbook and other publications can also provide you with author’s names and titles of works you can look for and consult. Various ethnohistoric sources are invaluable for the study of ancient Mexico, some dating from the Colonial period (16th-18th centuries), some concerning the living indigenous communities of such parts of Mexico as Oaxaca and the Yucatan.These include Fray Bernadino de Sahagun’s Florentine Codex (both Spanish and English translations are available) and many other documents from the Spanish colonial period (1521-1821), as well as anthropological studies of the culture of the Mixtec, Zapotec, Maya, and other indigenous people living today.

I also recommend that you use a system of footnotes and bibliography that is standard in the social sciences, and which I think makes a lot of sense.When you make your bibliography, I’d like you to list first the name of the author (s), followed by the date of the publication, its name, where it was published, and finally, the name of the publisher.This is the format I’ve used below; i. e.:

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