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Tradition Brought to the Surface: Continuity, Innovation and Change in the Late Formative Period, Taraco Peninsula, Bolivia

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  10 June 2010

Andrew P. Roddick
Department of Anthropology, University of Victoria, P.O. Box 3050, STN CSC, Victoria, BC, Canada, Email:
Christine A. Hastorf
Department of Anthropology, 232 Kroeber Hall, University of California-Berkeley, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA, Email:


Based on more than a decade of research on the Taraco Peninsula, Titicaca Basin, Bolivia, we discuss the role of memory, tradition and ancestral participation from the earliest settled communities to the founding and influence of the Tiwanaku order. We examine the shifting role of social memory vis-à-vis public ceremonies, pottery and food production. While the earlier phases give a sense of familial community and the construction of place through ancestor veneration, the later phases suggest stronger lineage commemoration, with families acting as gravitational forces in the burgeoning political developments. Our diachronic study on the Taraco Peninsula tracks these practices illustrating the movement along a discursive–non-discursive continuum, with some practices brought to the surface and politicized.

Research Article
Copyright © The McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research 2010

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