Rome and the Classic Maya: Comparing the Slow Collapse of Civilizations

April 10, 2017
Rome and the Classic Maya book cover
Glenn R. Storey

University of Iowa Professor Glenn R. Storey has published a new book, Rome and the Classic Maya: Comparing the Slow Collapse of Civilizations (Routledge). The book is co-authored by Rebecca Storey of the University of Houston.

From the Routledge website:

“This volume compares two of the most famous cases of civilizational collapse, that of the Roman Empire and the Classic Maya world. First examining the concept of collapse, and how it has been utilized in the historical, archaeological and anthropological study of past complex societies, Storey and Storey draw on extensive archaeological evidence to consider the ultimate failure of the institutions, infrastructure and material culture of both of these complex cultures.

Detailing the relevant economic, political, social and environmental factors behind these notable falls, Rome and the Classic Maya contends that a phenomenon of “slow collapse” has repeatedly occurred in the course of human history: complex civilizations are shown to eventually come to an end and give way to new cultures. Through their analysis of these two ancient case studies, the authors also present intriguing parallels to the modern world and offer potential lessons for the future.”

Glenn R. Storey is an associate professor in the Departments of Classics and Anthropology, both part of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.