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The State as a Chosen Woman: Brideservice and the Feeding of Tributaries in the Inka Empire

Peter Gose
American Anthropologist
Vol. 102, No. 1 (Mar., 2000), pp. 84-97
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the American Anthropological Association
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/683540
Page Count: 14
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
The State as a Chosen Woman: Brideservice and the Feeding of Tributaries in the Inka Empire
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Abstract

The Inka state was gendered in complex and apparently contradictory ways. In military contexts, it became masculine, emphasizing conquest as the basis of men's individual matrimonial claims and the Inka sovereign's right to "give" them women. However, in its civilian tributary system, the Inka state assumed a female guise, providing food, drink, and clothing to dependent tributaries as an expression of its political-economic power, according to the Andean idiom of mink'a. By extending Collier and Rosaldo's notion of brideservice, this paper explores how these "opposed" genderings of the Inka state actually implied each other and formed a single complex.

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