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A GIS Analysis of Production Areas, Ritual Spaces, and Socioeconomics at the Mixed Inka-Local Administrative Center of Turi, Northern Chile

Author(s): Beau Murphy ; Cristián González Rodríguez

Year: 2017

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Summary

While anthropologists are often concerned with profiling the socioeconomic character of the cultures they study, this task can be challenging for archaeological researchers investigating long-abandoned settlements. Intrasite socioeconomic reconstructions in particular may depend upon such factors as the accurate detection of specific production activities and the partitioning of architectural features into socially informative categories. This paper presents a case study on this topic wherein GIS is used to quantitatively define production loci and evaluate the spatial organization of architectural groups. The distribution of production materials across the site surface of Turi, an Inka administrative center in Northern Chile, are first evaluated to define specific production loci. These data are paired with a typological assessment of Turi’s ritual structures, known as chullpas, to elucidate differences in social identities across the settlement. Integrating these datasets with several additional GIS-based analyses supports the authors’ advancement of preliminary hypotheses regarding the settlement’s socioeconomic organization. Results indicate a complex imperial-local political economy operating upon a community of ‘neighborhoods’, whose chullpas evidence distinct social associations. These results are contextualized within Inka studies and the general application of GIS to resolve site-level socioeconomic data, and the efficacy of the utilized analytical units and methods are further discussed.


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A GIS Analysis of Production Areas, Ritual Spaces, and Socioeconomics at the Mixed Inka-Local Administrative Center of Turi, Northern Chile. Beau Murphy, Cristián González Rodríguez. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 432019)


Keywords

Geographic Keywords
South America


Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 17419

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