The Incas and Their Ancestors: The Archaeology of the Ancient Andes


From the hyper-arid desert of the Pacific Coast to the high-mountain plateaus of the Andes more than 12,000 feet above sea level to the lush forested Amazonian lowlands, Western South America presents one of the most diverse natural and cultural environments in the world and one of the few places where social complexity first developed. Beginning with the earliest human occupations in the region more than 12,000 years ago, this course examines how domestication, urbanization, the rise of early states, and major technological inventions changed life in the Andes from small village societies to the largest territorial polity of the Americas - the Inca Empire. Students will become familiar with the major debates in the field of Andean archaeology. Together, we will examine archaeological evidence (architecture, art, ceramics, metals, textiles, plant and animal remains, etc.) from context of everyday life (households, food production, craft production) to the rituals and ceremonies (offerings, tombs) that took place in domestic and public spaces. We will also touch on the role of Andean archaeology in the context of national politics and heritage sustainability.
Course Attributes: EN S; BU IS; AS LCD; AS SSC; FA SSC; AR SSC

Section 01

The Incas and Their Ancestors: The Archaeology of the Ancient Andes
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