Nahua patterns of colonization in maya towns of guatemala, 1524 to 1582: The indigenous records

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This article seeks to further contribute to our understanding of the outcomes of earlier Nahua-Spanish alliances after Guatemala was pacified. The richly documented struggles of the Maya-Pok'omam communities around Lake Amatitlan in Guatemala between 1524 and 1580 reveal-in microcosm-the larger processes some of them stretching back into the pre-contact period that Mesoamerican scholars call conquest-after-conquest. As this essay highlights, fifteen years after the initial phase of the Spanish conquest of Guatemala had ended, Nahua conquistadors from Central Mexico initiated their own colonization of Maya-Pok'omam towns, mobilizing both Nahua and Kaqchikel migrant groups to settle there. Within these Maya towns, the Nahua conquistadors impinged upon Maya economic assets, sharing them with their Dominican allies while maintaining political and social control over their local Maya subjects. Nahua economic and political encroachment of Maya assets finally brought about distinct and recognizable currents of Maya dissent against their foreign overlords, in parallel to the revival of local historical legacies of self-rule.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-234
Number of pages26
JournalColonial Latin American Review
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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