A study of the artistic traditions and history of Maya civilization before the Spanish Conquest. The course presents significant structures and monuments, imparts a basic knowledge of the hieroglyphic writing system, and surveys the volatile political history of the region. In particular, the course concentrates on the role of the visual arts in the construction, maintenance and public presentation of elements of royal identity and cosmic order that reinforced the tenuous political power of Maya rulers. Slide presentations, lectures and discussion. Prerequisite is one of the following: ARTH 100, one 200-level ARTH course, or consent of instructor.