Collapse, Migration, and Reorganization of Prehistoric Society in Nasca Peru
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This grant provided summer salary and funded strontium analysis on seven burials from the archaeological site of La Tiza in Peru. Strontium analysis provides information on where a person lived as a child (through analysis of teeth) and where they lived before they died (through analysis of skeletal material). The results indicated that four individuals were born and lived locally and three were from outside the region. One non-local individual was a decapitated male and provided insight into the taking of trophy heads in this region. He may have been captured in territorial or ritual warfare (or a combination of the two), sacrificed at the site or someplace else, and then buried at La Tiza. The other two non-local individuals were a woman and child buried together with a male and a second child. They all date to a period of occupation after the collapse of the Wari empire. This may suggest exogamous marriage practices in this period or new migration into the region during this post-collapse period. The results of this study were presented in a paper and a poster at the Society for American Archaeology Annual Meetings, the largest archaeological conference in North America. In addition, information on the strontium analysis was briefly addressed in a paper that is being published in Current Anthropology, one of the major journals in the discipline. Lastly, the results of this preliminary study are being incorporated into grant proposals that will be written and submitted in Fall 2007.