The maize civilization is all the territories and populations where maize is (or rather was) the main crop and the main food. It covers the American continent and opposes as such the civilization of wheat (Europe and the Middle East) and rice (Asia). This concept, coined by the French historian Fernand Braudel, is mainly applied to the history of the world from Antiquity to. By the end of, the first globalization blurs the tracks and makes this description obsolete. Thus, wheat is massively introduced by Europeans on the American continent since. Corn is the civilization plant of the pre-Columbian American continent. Strangely, European scholars thought that this plant came from Asia while it was introduced in Europe following the discovery of the New World by Christopher Columbus. Maize is the staple crop of the most solid pre-Columbian civilizations such as the Incas, the Mayans and the Aztecs.
* Fernand Braudel, material civilization, economy and capitalism, -, Paris, Armand Colin, 1979, volume 1, chapter “The bread of every day”, p.81-152.