Tuesday, October 16, 2012
1491, by Charles Mann
1491 is a very readable and wide ranging introduction to many of the big issues raised by archaeological research in the New World. And it begins with the example of eastern Bolivia. Mann spent time with Clark Erickson, seeing firsthand the extent and complexity of the pre-Columbian earthworks in the Llanos de Mojos. He wrote a cover article for the Atlantic magazine, and then developed it into a full-length book. This is a new way of looking at one of the most important moments in modern history, and 1491 deserves to be read by anyone who is interested in the archaeology, history, geography, and modern societies of the Americas.