Studying Inca and Local Ceramics in the Asia Valley, Peru
Baca Marroquin, Ancira Emily
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My research investigates the multidirectional interplay between core and periphery informed by theories of expanding empires and provincial economy. By examining the distribution and consumption patterns of imperial and local ceramics, I hope to elucidate the differing economic participation of intermediate elites and commoners of a non-state coastal society as they engaged with the Inca Empire (A.D. 1400-1532), the largest empire to develop in the Americas. Through the compositional analysis of imperial and local ceramics, my project aims to understand economic interactions between the Incas and provincial groups on the Peruvian central coast. This image is part of the clay and ceramic samples collected from Inca Period elite and non-elite households that are being analyzed to determine material provenance. This information will allow insights into the distribution networks and consumption patterns that brought distinct ceramic types to households of differing socio-economic levels in the Asia Valley. My research will have direct applications in developing theories of imperial expansion and provincial economy in modern and ancient settings. In particular, my research provides a unique perspective by implementing an innovative methodology that combines approaches from archaeology, geology and chemistry to examine imperial economy.