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Did Potters Urn? Potential Skeletal Evidence of Ceramic Production from the Ch’iji Jawira Site in Tiwanaku, Bolivia.

Author(s): Sara Becker

Year: 2016

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Summary

The city of Tiwanaku (AD 500-1100) in the Bolivian altiplano was comprised of multiethnic neighborhoods, with some of these barrios being home to "guild-like" specialists laboring at differing jobs. Ch’iji Jawira, one site within this community, is often described in the archaeological record as containing both a manufacturing center for pottery and a residential area home to these ceramic manufacturers. Prior bioarchaeological research has also shown that the people who were buried at the Ch’iji Jawira site show statistically significant differences in labor and activity from others who lived in the Tiwanaku capital. This study further explores the idea that Ch’iji Jawira was home to ceramic specialists using a life-history approach and describing one individual from this community, a 30-39 year old female. This person has evidence of osteoarthritis in her arms, wrists, hands, fingers, and lumbar spine. Furthermore, the bones of her wrists, hands, and fingers show extensive skeletal changes at tendon and muscle attachment areas. While it cannot be definitely determined that she was a potter, her bones do suggest she worked at tasks different from other Tiwanaku citizens involving repetitive joint movement as well as heavy arm and hand musculature.


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Cite this Record

Did Potters Urn? Potential Skeletal Evidence of Ceramic Production from the Ch’iji Jawira Site in Tiwanaku, Bolivia.. Sara Becker. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 405150)


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Spatial Coverage

min long: -93.691; min lat: -56.945 ; max long: -31.113; max lat: 18.48 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America