Next the site will be surface collected in natural

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Next, the site will be surface-collected in natural and arbitrary units, depending on the superficial definition of terraces. The collections will be analyzed immediately in order to identify variability that could indicate ethnically distinct sectors or areas of differing status or function. These data will be useful in themselves for understanding the sites, and will guide subsequent surface clearing. Areas where Tiwanaku and local ceramics are mixed could indicate locations of ethnic interaction or places where sequential occupations might be stratigraphically distinguishable, especially on the uphill margins of the sites where terraces are most likely to have been covered by slumping and reoccupied. Since the contemporaneity of Tiwanaku and Chiribaya styles is not generally accepted, stratigraphic superposition of 5
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Tiwanaku over Chiribaya would be important evidence of contemporaneity. Natural units of up to 10 X 10 meters will be selected from sampling strata defined by ethnic, functional, or status differences indicated by the map and surface collections. These units will be brushed to expose the expected cane wall stubs and stonework needed for a more detailed analysis of residential patterns, status differences, and structures pertaining to administration, storage, or control of access. Again, the data will be useful both directly in analyzing the site and as a guide to locating excavation units. Guided by the surface collections and brushed architecture, purposefully selected samples of the brushed surfaces will be opened as shallow excavation units of up to 5 X 10 meters, to recover refuse suggesting variable activities, ethnicity, status, and function in architectural and feature context, and to seek chronologically significant stratigraphy. Time is allocated for six large units and two smaller ones. All soil will be screened. Soil samples will be taken to the field lab in order to recover small botanical and faunal remains by fine screening or seed- blowing, which are preferable to floatation in these dry, loose, and salty deposits. Proveniencing, labeling, and excavation recording formats will be consistent with those of other Programa Contisuyu projects in order to ensure comparability of data. In the lab, ceramics will be dry-brushed clean for identification as much as possible, since the water supply will be limited. Because the Osmore soils are salty, ceramics that must be washed will be soaked for a week in a series of water baths to extract salt and to prevent crystal growth and exfoliation. Organic materials will only be mechanically cleaned. Finally, at least 25 burials will be excavated, to recover both associated artifacts and human remains. Burial cists will be located by clearing several randomly selected broad areas in different cemetery sectors, to minimize spatial bias. If a good sample of remains from Tiwanaku and, ideally, non-Tiwanaku graves can be assembled, numerous important questions concerning the origins of the colonists and their relationship with the local population can be addressed as described under "analytical methods".
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  • Fall '02
  • BruceOwen
  • Radiocarbon dating, Tiwanaku, tiwanaku colonies, tiwanaku expansion

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