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  • Jeffrey P. Blomster (a1)

Interaction between the Gulf Coast Olmecs and various regions of Early Formative Mesoamerica remains debated and poorly understood. In Oaxaca, models have been dominated by neoevolutionary epistemology; interaction between the Valley of Oaxaca and San Lorenzo has been characterized by emulation or peer polity models. Data from the Valley of Oaxaca, the Nochixtlán Valley, and the Gulf Coast demonstrate that San Lorenzo was at a different level of sociopolitical complexity than its contemporaries. Previous comparisons between Olmec-style pottery in the Gulf Coast and Valley of Oaxaca are found to be problematic, and have led to the impression that Oaxaca villagers produced more of this pottery than did the Olmecs. Neutron activation analysis demonstrates the Gulf Coast Olmecs exported ceramics to Mixtecs and Zapotecs in Oaxaca, while receiving few if any pots in return, suggesting that new models and theoretical perspectives must be applied to understanding the relationships between Oaxacan chiefdoms and the nascent Olmec state at San Lorenzo. An agency perspective explores what Mixtec, Zapotec, and Olmec groups may have taken from these interactions and relationships and acknowledges both local and Gulf Coast understandings of “Olmec.” Such relationships may be characterized more by acquisition between regions, with San Lorenzo as a superordinate center.

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This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

Jeffrey P. Blomster , Hector Neff , and Michael D. Glascock 2005 Olmec Pottery Production and Export in Ancient Mexico Determined through Elemental Analysis. Science 307:10681072.

Jean Comaroff , and John L. Comaroff 1991 Of Revelation and Revolution: Christianity, Colonialism, and Consciousness in South Africa. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Kent V. Flannery , and Joyce Marcus 2000 Formative Mexican Chiefdoms and the Myth of the “Mother Culture.” Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 19:137.

Hector Neff , Jeffrey P. Blomster , Michael D. Glascock , Ronald L. Bishop , M. James Blackman , Michael D. Coe , George L. Cowgill , Ann Cyphers , Richard A. Diehl , Stephen Houston , Arthur A. Joyce , Carl P. Lipo , and Marcus Winter 2006 Smokescreens in the Provenance Investigation of Early Formative Mesoamerican Ceramics. Latin American Antiquity 17:104118.

James B Stoltman , Joyce Marcus , Kent V. Flannery , James H. Burton , and Robert G. Moyle 2005 Petrographic Evidence Shows that Pottery Exchange between the Olmec and their Neighbors was Two-way. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 102:1121311218.

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Ancient Mesoamerica
  • ISSN: 0956-5361
  • EISSN: 1469-1787
  • URL: /core/journals/ancient-mesoamerica
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