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Minnesota State University, Mankato
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April 12-13: Latin American Archaeologist to Give Three Lectures

Visiting speaker Edwin Barnhart will discuss Tarascans, ancient Peruvian art, mapping of ancient Maya city.

Minnesota State University, Mankato Media Relations Office News Release, 4-6-2018

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Mankato, Minn. – Latin American archaeologist Edwin Barnhart will deliver three presentations Thursday and Friday (April 12-13) at Minnesota State University, Mankato in a Nadine B. Andreas speaker event sponsored by the University’s Department of World Languages and Cultures and Division of Institutional Diversity.

The presentations, free and open to the public, are available via live stream at, with the schedule as follows:

  • Thursday, April 12, 2-3 p.m., Centennial Student Union, Room 201
    “The Tarascans – A Pre-Columbian Empire of Central Mexico”

Before the arrival of Cortés, the Aztec Empire had succeeded in defeating and subjugating every other culture in Mesoamerica except one – the Tarascans. This lecture will introduce the audience to this underappreciated civilization and explain how they were able to fend off the New World’s most bellicose empire.

  • Thursday, April 12, 4-5:15 p.m., Armstrong Hall, Room 101
    Monotheism in the Shamanic Art of Ancient Peru”

This lecture will present a fascinating reinterpretation of ancient Peruvian art – revealing the shamanic healing ceremonies, the calling of supernatural spirits, and how decapitation is not execution, but rather about enslaving the souls of one’s enemies. Refreshments will be served after this lecture.

  • Friday, April 13, 1-1:45 p.m., Memorial Library, Room 47
    “The Palenque Mapping Project – Rediscovery of an Ancient Maya City”

This informal classroom lecture will discuss Dr. Barnhart’s three-year effort to map the ancient Maya city of Palenque in the jungles of Chiapas, Mexico. The methods employed, the challenges the team faced and the discoveries revealed by the project will all be explained.

According to a Department of World Languages and Cultures event preview, Barnhart has appeared on History Channel, Discovery Channel, Canada’s Religion Channel and Japanese Public Television. He is the director of Maya Exploration Center, a Fellow of the Explorer Club, and a widely recognized authority on ancient astronomy, mathematics, and calendar systems. During his over 20 years in Latin American archaeology he has discovered the ancient city of Ma’ax Na in Belize, mapped over 4,000 ancient buildings and published over a dozen articles and books.

For more information, contact Enrique Torner, professor of Spanish, by phone at 507-389-5519 or by email at

Minnesota State Mankato’s Department of World Languages and Cultures is part of the University's College of Arts and Humanities. The Andreas endowment supports the College of Arts and Humanities by helping to bring guest artists and scholars to campus.

Minnesota State Mankato, a comprehensive university with 14,712 students, is part of the Minnesota State system, which includes 30 colleges and seven universities.

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