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National Science Foundation (USA) 2006

Prehispanic Water Management Systems in the Arid Sierra of the Moquegua Valley, Peru

Water Management Arid Sierra


Titre : Prehispanic Water Management Systems in the Arid Sierra of the Moquegua Valley, Peru

Organismes NSF : Division Of Behavioral and Cognitive Sci (BCS)

Durée : January 1, 2006 — December 31, 2007

Under the supervision of Dr. Patricia McAnany, Chris Dayton will examine remnants of irrigation technology used by ancient people in an extraordinarily challenging setting, the high-altitude badlands in the Moquegua Valley of southern Peru. In the summer of 2006, he will collect spatial, soil, hydraulic, and other data from irrigation canals, agricultural terraces, reservoirs, check dams, and other water management structures built by the Wari (c. 600-1000 A.D.), Estuquina (c. 1300-1500 A.D.), and Inka (c. 1475-1525 A.D.) cultures. This study will augment the established sequence of Wari, Estuquina, and Inka occupation in the upper Moquegua Valley by comparing how these ancient cultures-particularly the expansive Wari and Inka states-approached similar engineering problems in the harsh desert sierra environment. Furthermore, it will enhance the archaeology of water management by testing a promising but heretofore unused concept, administrative density, that may represent the material correlates of past water allocation strategies. Finally, this project will contribute to one of the most important topics in the last half-century of anthropological and archaeological research : how scarce resources such as water are distributed within social and political frameworks.
The proposed study will also provide opportunities for international collaboration in training, research, and heritage preservation. Field supervision by Dr. Patrick R. Williams and Dr. Michael E. Moseley will expose Peruvian and North American students to hydraulic archaeology-the study of ancient water management-a rare specialization within archaeology. In addition, excavations will be conducted in conjunction with a representative of the Peruvian Instituto Nacional de Cultura (INC), strengthening ties between North American and Peruvian research efforts. Further, this collaboration will integrate the proposed project with the pan-Andean Qhapaq Nan initiative, which conceptualizes the Prehispanic engineered landscape as a complex mixture of natural and cultural features worthy of World Heritage protection. The terraces, canals, and other archaeological features to be studied in this project are nonrenewable cultural resources ; although they have survived up to 1,500 years, and seem at a visceral level to be a timeless, indestructible part of the Andean landscape, modern development is now destroying them at an alarming rate.

Partenaires : Patricia McAnany mcanany (Principal Investigator)

Financement :  : $12,000.00

Présentation (National Science Foundation)

Page publiée le 10 juillet 2017, mise à jour le 3 novembre 2017