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date: 22 April 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Prior to the arrival of Europeans in the Americas, Mayan literature was inscribed on pottery, pyramid walls, stelae, and bark paper. Mayan literary expression was part of the Mesoamerican cultural complex that also included the Mixtec, Olmec, Nahua, or Zapotec and formed thousands of years before the modern republics came into existence. The Maya are credited for developing the most advanced graphic system of representing language on a writing surface. This chapter focuses on a Mayan literary masterpiece, the Popol Wuj, and its recovery in the nineteeth century. It also examines the mathematical, temporal, and social meaning of the Popol Wuj; how it seamlessly integrates space and time; and its reception in postindependence literature, especially in the works of authors such as Miguel Ángel Asturias, Rigobeta Menchú, Ernesto Cardinal, and Omar Cabezas.

Keywords: Mayan literature, Popol Wuj, space, time, postindependence literature, Miguel Angel Asturias, Rigobeta Menchú, Ernesto Cardinal, Omar Cabezas

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