Nahuatl Fiction / ficci=?ISO-8859-1?B?8w==?=n Nahuatl

Frances Karttunen karttu at NANTUCKET.NET
Thu Jul 22 00:02:08 UTC 2004

on 7/21/04 6:37 PM, Archaeology Institute at institute at CSUMB.EDU wrote:

> Nahua language and culture discussion <NAHUAT-L at LISTS.UMN.EDU> writes:
>> I look forward to interacting with everyone here, and would appreciate it if
>> you could point me any existing works of fiction about the Nahuatls, to make
>> sure I'm not beginning to write something that already exists!

> The book by
> Gary Jennings titled "Aztec."  This work constitutes a remarkable piece of
> fiction (warts and all) pertaining to the Nahua (specifically, Mexica Aztec)
> peoples of pre-Hispanic central Mexico.

On the other hand, there are numbers of knowledgeable people who were
appalled by "Aztec." One responsible scholar, now deceased, felt that
Jennings had misled her about what he was doing. In publicly thanking her,
he appeared to put her imprimatur on a work she found outrageous. So take
this novel on with care.

As for me, after making my way through a few chapters of "Aztec" on an
interminable flight from London to DFW, I chose boredom over experiencing
any more of it and hesitated to even leave it on the plane for someone else
to find.

I suggest a work of nonfiction instead: Inga Clendinnen's 1991 book,
"Aztecs:  An Interpretation," published by Cambridge University Press. She
set out to convey what it was like to be a man, a woman, a child growing up
in Aztec society, and she does it with color and intensity.

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