Hillforts of the Ancient Andes: Colla Warfare, Society, and Landscape

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Gainesville: University Press of Florida, This was a time of political devolution and stasis, bookended by the collapse of Wari and Tiwanaku states at the beginning and the extension of Inca hegemony at the end. Notwithstanding the collapse that ushered in this period, the Titicaca Basin seems to have remained relatively peaceful until about , at least if we are to judge by how little evidence there is of fortification and other defensive measures.

At this point, though, affairs darkened. There is evidence that climate began to change with increases in drought, which likely caused crop failures and may have fueled growing resource scarcity.

Hillforts Of The Ancient Andes Colla Warfare Society And Landscape 2011

Whether for this reason or some other, war became a stark and mordant reality. The population migrated away from the better lands at the center of the basin, dispersing into small settlements in or just below highly fortified table top forts pukara. With this abrupt shift, the Colla abandoned much of their previous religious and ceremonial life, and powerful state rulers gave way to leaders with but minimally elaborated status and power.

This state of affairs persisted until the latter half of the fifteenth century, when the warring polities of the pukara fell to the expansion of the Inca Empire--though not without an armed resistance that the Inca considered among the most formidable they had encountered during their entire expansion.

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The product is a work that is meticulously researched, analytically incisive, and so clearly written that it is a pleasure to read. Its particular worth, though, lies in the two issues it targets, warfare and political evolution.

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Each is of considerable interest to contemporary archaeology and of self-evident importance to our understanding of the human predicament, but it is their unusual conjunction at this point and period that makes this work especially significant. War has always hovered around scholarly discussions of how political complexity emerged and developed on earth, but for the most part research has focused on their synergy, on how war, its intensification, and the development of political complexity may have co-evolved.

What does the collapse of state level society and the intensification of war tell us about political and military process?


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The climate changes that appear to have fueled the flight to pukaras ended in the s. Yet the archaeological evidence shows that the Colla population remained ensconced on its hilltops well into the s, even though climate records indicate that by this time precipitation was again more plentiful.

What kept the people on these wind-swept, inaccessible heights?

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Arkush brings to this question an idea also recently advanced by Mark Allen for the Maori: whether or not war promotes political evolution, it can certainly also stymie the process. The physical and social legacy of warfare fortifications, defensive settlements, and the formation of local alliances can entrench political fragmentation. The argument is that small, exceptionally well-defended, independent polities become immune to political integration.

Because they are all but impregnable, they are difficult to unite through military force; and, because their leaders know this, they are equally difficult to integrate through nonviolent political processes: why become subservient to the leader of another polity when that other leader cannot enforce his or her rule? Political disintegration gives rise to fortification and other defensive measures, which then sustain political disintegration: the system shunts itself onto a siding from which escape is difficult. This is a powerful argument with considerable generalizability--the hilltop forts of Iron Age Europe and the mesa-top settlements of the desert southwest come immediately to mind as potential venues.

But there is much else to applaud in this book. Chapter 3 provides an important foundation for future modeling of the relationship between political complexity and patterns of fortification and defensive location.


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  6. In an effort that will be especially welcome to social anthropologists, Arkush also makes an attempt to interpret the political form that these pukara polities might have assumed, and though there is much to consider in her book and many points worthy of discussion, it is this interpretation that I should like to pursue here. What we can infer from the evidence is that the permanent or semi-permanent residents of a pukara formed an independent political community that varied in membership from as few as seventy to perhaps more than a thousand members, with a few hundred being a plausible average.

    These political communities were areally clustered into what Arkush persuasively argues were defensive coalitions or alliance relationships varying in size from about three to twenty pukaras. Within a coalition, there may sometimes have been weak relations of dominance between smaller and large pukaras, and at times some coalitions may have banded together into even large ones. But how was this structure organized? El adorno de barbilla de los senores altiplanicos como simbolo de continuidad historica y emblema etnico en los Andes del sur d. Mac Colla gives his own post-factum reply to Arnold's monoglot wish to see the extinction of the Welsh language in his article 'Welshing the Scottish Race'.

    Contrary to expectations, variables related to companies' credit quality such as risk, time of initial public offering IPO , and profitability are not relevant to explaining homogeneity or heterogeneity in the debt structure of Brazilian companies, contradicting the findings of Rauh and Sufi and Colla et al.

    In June, another , bottles of Coca Colla will be distributed, and by the end of the year Ospicoca aims to have closed a deal with the government to produce 20, bottles a day. Los estudios aclaran que el etnonimo colla es una generalizacion que se hace para los indigenas de la Puna de Atacama durante el periodo que esta pertenecio a la Republica de Bolivia, y que se siguio utilizando hasta la actualidad.

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    Marcas memorables en los relatos collas de atacama. Latest feature by Rolanda Colla , a Swiss director of Italian descent, is credited to a staggering five screenwriters including the helmer but struggles to come up with something original to say; the grown-up characters' pre-divorce bickering m particular amounts to a pileup of threadbare cliches.

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    Summer Games. Promise of passion at the Phil.