This one-hour program is divided into five chapters. The Forgotten Maya Temples. In 1774, Spanish explorer Jose Calderon rediscovers the temples of Palenque and the ancient hieroglyphs of the Maya, a people whose culture was decimated by the Spanish conquistadors.
A Hidden History. Toiling away in the basement of Harvard’s Peabody Museum, archeologist Tatiana Proskouriakoff discovers that Maya monuments contain a decipherable history rather than mere pictures and symbols.
Political Roadblock. Working behind the Iron Curtain, Russian linguist Yuri Knorosov posits that Maya glyphs may represent sounds, but his ideas are discredited in the West.
Child’s Play. David Stuart submits his first scholarly paper on glyphs at age 12 and later becomes a major player in Maya studies with his advances in script decipherment.
Cultural Revelations. An image of the ancient Maya comes to life, and their descendants in modern-day Mexico and Central America begin to relearn their lost language and history.