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2012 and the End of the World

3.3 of 5 stars 3.30  ·  rating details  ·  46 ratings  ·  15 reviews
Did the Maya really predict that the world would end in December of 2012? If not, how and why has 2012 millenarianism gained such popular appeal? In this deeply knowledgeable book, two leading historians of the Maya answer these questions in a succinct, readable, and accessible style. Matthew Restall and Amara Solari introduce, explain, and ultimately demystify the 2012 ph ...more
ebook, 160 pages
Published January 16th 2011 by Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
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I skimmed this one when it came into the library. The language is simple enough for a wide range of readers, but it jumps around a lot, without much clear focus. He seems to bring up some important points, but lists so many facts and controversies that those important facts get lost in the flood of information, when they should be highlighted.

SPOILERS: For example, he notes some major factors that should tell readers that the 2012 apocalypse prophecies aren't true:
1) That cyclical renewal was p
I've always been fascinated by the mathematic, scientific and astronomical achievements of ancient societies - whether it be Egyptians, Mayans or whomever. So, over the past couple of years as talk of the impending 2012 apocalypse has increased, I've been curious about the so-called Mayan calendar that predicts the end of the world on December 21, 2012.

This book is presented like a college course (because as the introduction explains, it is going to be a college course in fall of 2012 at Penn S
Jason Golomb
"2012 and the End of the World" is a concise and detailed look into all things 2012, focusing on the history of the New World's apocalyptic fascination and how it connects to this key date in Maya history.

Matthew Restall and Amara Solari are professors at Penn State. The two were preparing a class to be taught IN 2012, focused ON 2012 and the result of those preparations is this book. Spanning only about 100 pages, the chapters are well-organized and well-structured for easy classroom note taki
A short book with a history on the Mayan Long Count calendar, and how we are interpreting it wrong. The first few chapters gave me all I really wanted to know, (what the calendar *actually* says about the world ending), then it went into the Spanish conquistadors in Mexico, other apocalyptic theories, and loosely ties it together at the end.
Had the pleasure of attending a lecture led by Amara Solari and Matthew Restall about this very topic on Monday, November 28, 2011, at CMU. All the talk of the Maya doomsday prediction (or lack thereof) really piqued my interest in their book.

Note to self: I must read this book THIS year.
Reading this for one of my classes this semester. So far, it's pretty interesting. Where did all this "Mayan apocalypse" craziness originate? Is it actually foretold in ancient Maya mythology, or is it a thoroughly Western concept imposed on recently deciphered Maya artifacts?
Gevera Bert
This very thin book read more like an extended outline. It was so abbreviated as to be useless. Perhaps it will work well as the textbook for the authors' future class, but as a stand-alone book, it was disappointing.
I am not a conspiracy theory kind of guy so I would never read a book like this if it had not been for school. That being said, it was fairly well written and Restall does a good job crushing silly 2012 apocalyptic notions.
Enka-Candler Library
A brief, but concise look at the history surrounding the 2012 hoop-la and how it came to be. I would recommend it to anyone looking for something that is a bit more reasonable that a lot of the stuff out there.
James F
Written by two professional specialists in Maya culture, this short book takes on the nonsense of the "2012ologists". The first chapter outlines the "evidence" for the "prophecy", the second chapter shows that it was never intended as such, and that there was no tradition of apocalyptic thinking among the pre-Columbian Maya; the remainder of the book argues that apocalyptic themes in colonial Mesoamerican writings were introduced by the Franciscans and are part of the larger Christian apocalypti ...more
In my opinion, anyone worried about what might happen at the tail end of 2012 ought to read this book.
Fine scholarship about the Maya and the claims that they calculated an apocalypse for 2012.
What is this fascination that the United States has with the end? Could it be the predominantly Christian population that resides here? In their book 2012 and the End of the World, Matthew Restall and Amara Solari answer and expound on these very questions and others with a trained, academic eye, albeit critical and full of doubt. Restall pokes fun at the “2012 mania” that has swept through America in recent decades. He deftly clears up the misconceptions surrounding the supposed “Mayan millena ...more
Nice little book about the current obsession with so-called prophecy of 2012 being the end of the world. The two writers, who are Maya scholars that teach at Penn State, do a fine job summarizing the key elements of Maya culture and history that have lead several people in modern times to take the end of a calendar based on mathematical calculation as a prophecy of the end of the world. The calender was a tablet that was discovered by accident when a bulldozer was clearing space for a concrete f ...more
Trey Miles
It was a very interesting book. It gave great insight on Mayan predictions. Although it's a subject of the past now, it makes a good coffee table book.
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