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NSFproposalExtracts

NSFproposalExtracts - Extracts from a 1989 NSF grant...

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Extracts from a 1989 NSF grant proposal that was funded Tiwanaku Colonies of the Lower Osmore Valley: The Expansion of an Early State Bruce Owen Project Summary Tiwanaku was one of the early expansive states that should be considered in any comparative study of the origins of complex society. Current research in the Tiwanaku altiplano and the middle Osmore valley on its western edge is shedding light on the center of the Tiwanaku phenomenon. The proposed research, part of the Programa Contisuyu, seeks to understand the frontiers of Tiwanaku expansion, thought to comprise colonies producing low altitude crops for the altiplano core. The project will map, surface collect, clear, and excavate in large areal exposures the residential areas of two such colonies in the lower Osmore valley: El Algodonal and Loreto Viejo. The goals are to establish the specific resources that motivated Tiwanaku expansion into the region, the internal administrative, functional, and class structure of the colonies, the relationship between the colonies, and the relations of the colonists to any local population. Studies of mortuary remains will test the hypothesis that the colonists were literally immigrants from the altiplano. The data will be interpreted primarily through comparisons with Programa Contisuyu findings from local Chiribaya and middle valley Tiwanaku sites, and the Inka empire as documented in the literature and in recent research. 1
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Tiwanaku Colonies of the Lower Osmore Valley: The Expansion of an Early State Introduction Social scientists have a fundamental curiosity about the origins and nature of state-level society, that scale of social organization which, only some 5000 years after its first appearance, affects the lives of virtually everyone on earth. To understand this theme of increasing social, political, and economic extension and complexity, we need to know what early states were like. By comparing them, we discover the possible forms of organization, how they were the same and different, and which features were essential and which free to vary. Of the several regions of the world that independently developed state-level societies, the South American Andes cradled a number of true expansive states or empires. From perhaps 300 to 1200 AD, long before the better-known Inka, a state centered on the city of Tiwanaku dominated much of the southern Andes, with fingers of settlement ultimately reaching out from its high, cold altiplano core to the warm jungle lowlands on the east and the Pacific coast on the west, and with indirect trade contacts, at least, stretching as far as 700 kilometers south (fig. 1) (Mujica 1985, Kolata 1982, Ponce 1972). Tiwanaku was probably the largest Andean polity before the Inka, and was arguably "pristine", without precedent at least in the southern Andes.
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