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Textile production during the Inka occupation (1.400-1.536 d.C.) in Mauro Valley (Precordillera of Semi-arid North, Chile, 31°S): documented from the study of bone artefacts and from camelid domestication
Gabriela Bravo  1, *@  , Patricio López  2@  , Boris Santander  3@  , Isabel Cartajena  4@  
1 : Universidad de Chile
Avenida Ignacio Carrera Pinto 1045, Santiago, Ñuñoa, Región Metropolitana -  Chili
2 : Museo de Historia Natural y Cultural del Desierto de Atacama
3 : Departamento de Antropología, Universidad Alberto Hurtado
Almirante Barroso 10, Santiago, Región Metropolitana -  Chili
4 : Departamento de Antropología, Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de Chile
Avenida Ignacio Carrera Pinto 1045, Santiago, Ñuñoa, Región Metropolitana -  Chili
* : Corresponding author

Textiles could give an approach about the importance, the intensive use, and the animal management practices in the elaboration of fibers for its production. In the Andean areas, they are significant elements within the Inka Empire strategies of reciprocity and redistribution. However, the knowledge about textile production in environments where this type of evidence is not preserved is limited, such as in the Andes mountain range in Chilean Semi-arid North, which bias the discussion of its production in the control dynamics of local populations. This work discusses the textile production during Inca times in Mauro Valley (IV Region, Chile), an area located in the southern fringe of the Chilean Semi-arid North, based on indicators such as bone artefacts and the osteometric evidence of camelid remains. The first one indicates a high frequency of artefacts in MAU094 and MAU067 sites destined to textile production such as torteras and wichuñas, which were defined from morphological and micro-wear analysis. The second evidence -the osteometric one- points to a size diversity associated with llamas (Lama glama) used as cargo animals common in the caravan system implemented by the Inkas in the area, wild camelids (guanacos), and others of intermediate size possibly associated with animal fiber production. These evidences relate to animal management practices, and to camelid domestication during Inka times in the Andes areas. In addition, it is linked to an Inka logic associated with a production system such as the mit`a, in this case destined to the production of goods of great significance for the Empire and as a mechanism of control or management of local populations. This project was funded by “Proyecto Arqueológico Mauro”.

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