Durable inequality in aztec society

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Charles Tilly proposed a model of durable social inequality that is potentially applicable to a wide range of societies. I demonstrate this potential by examining his causal mechanisms of inequality—exploitation, opportunity hoarding, emulation, and adaptation—as they apply to Aztec society immediately prior to the Spanish conquest of 1521. Tilly’s model helps resolve key issues in the analysis of Aztec inequality and class structure. This application exemplifies the utility of Tilly’s model in explaining social inequality in Aztec society and in unraveling causal relationships characteristic of ancient complex societies generally.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)162-186
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Anthropological Research
Volume77
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Aztecs
  • Charles Tilly
  • Exploitation
  • Inequality
  • Mesoamerica
  • Stratification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

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