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Community Organization Reflected by the Household: A Study of Pre-Columbian Social Dynamics

Garth Bawden
Journal of Field Archaeology
Vol. 9, No. 2 (Summer, 1982), pp. 165-181
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd.
DOI: 10.2307/529475
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/529475
Page Count: 17
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Community Organization Reflected by the Household: A Study of Pre-Columbian Social Dynamics
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Abstract

This study presents a methodology for identifying the precise nature of the mechanisms of social structure operating in a complex urban settlement. Andean settlement archaeology has traditionally used complex ceremonial and religious architecture to study social organization and evolution. Although a few projects have identified residential patterns and noted their significance as social definers, this work has only superficially examined the specific nature of population organization embodied in the residential architecture of individual settlements. Thus only general commentaries are possible regarding the form of social control and wider aspects of cultural integration associated with organizational mechanisms that operated within these settlements. This paper describes an intensive study of the residential architecture of the urban Moche V site of Galindo (ca. 600-750 A.C.) in the Moche Valley of northern Peru. Detailed statistics pertaining to architectural form, range of variation, differential intra-site distribution, content, and social separators are used to define the exact nature of population organization at the settlement. This information allows deeper examination of general social integration, population control, and related internal social stress, and suggests that Moche V sociopolitical structure as observed at Galindo was in a state of rapid adaptation to potentially destructive pressures.

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