Mobility in the Atacama Desert, northern Chile, in the Late Intermediate Period (AD 900-1450): A re-evaluation using stable isotope analysis
Keywords: atacama desert, stable isotopes, mobility, palaeodiet
Research on the Late Intermediate Period (AD 900-1450) in northern Chile has been strongly influenced by two mobility models: John Murra's classic vertical ecological archipelago model, with highland colonies in the lowlands; and the gyratory mobility model, with pastoralists and their llama caravans controlling trade. The widespread application of these two models, however, suffers from a lack of supporting archaeological evidence. Stable isotope analysis provides a more direct approach for studying both diet and mobility patterns, complementing material culture studies. The aim of this paper is to evaluate the presence of colonies and/or specialised highland caravans in the lowlands of northern Chile through the application of delta C-13, delta N-15 and delta O-18 to human tooth enamel, bone collagen and bone apatite. The results show strong local traditions in terms of diet and mobility associated with the Loa-San Pedro, Antofagasta and Pica-Tarapaca cultural groups. Our results suggest a non-local origin for some individuals in Pica-Tarapaca and Loa-San Pedro, but provide little evidence to support either the presence of 'colonies' or of specialised 'caravans'. Mobility patterns were, instead, diverse and flexible, including female and male individuals that moved at different moments of their lives.
|Título según WOS:||Mobility in the Atacama Desert, northern Chile, in the Late Intermediate Period (AD 900-1450): A re-evaluation using stable isotope analysis|
|Título de la Revista:||QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL|
|Fecha de publicación:||2019|
|Página de inicio:||66|