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Department of Archaeology


Previous research

A long tradition of archaeological work by Argentine researchers in the Calchaquí began at the end of the 19th century and intensified during the first decade of the 20th century. Key early work included excavations by Ambrosetti (1897, 1907--08) and Debenedetti (1908), alongside the explorations of Boman (1908). Their accomplishments were followed by many other archaeologists whose work established the basic pre-Hispanic sequence for northwest Argentina. Current archaeological projects being conducted in the region of Northwest Argentina include those directed by Dr F. Acuto, Dra L. Baldini, Dra M. Lazzari, Dr A. Nielsen, and Dr H. Yacobaccio, among others. All are yielding important insights about the region and adding to a growing picture of life before and during Inka rule.

More recent research in the northern Calchaquí Valley includes work on the Inka occupation, directed by T. D'Altroy (Columbia University) and A.M. Lorandi and V. Williams (Universidad de Buenos Aires) (D'Altroy et al. 2000). Elizabeth DeMarrais conducted a regional survey of the northern Calchaquí Valley in 1993-94 (reported in DeMarrais 1997; a monograph is in preparation).

Elizabeth DeMarrais and Kirsten Olson conducted comparative work at Borgatta and a neighbouring community, Corral del Algarrobal (SSalCac 27), in 1998 and 1999. This work produced a suite of radiocarbon dates and a preliminary understanding of variability in subsistence patterns, domestic organization, and political activities within the region. The results comprise a portion of the data for Olson's PhD dissertation at Columbia University and a joint monograph is in preparation.

Dr Felix Acuto, working independently with a team from the Universidad de Buenos Aires, has also studied several local sites (Acuto 1999).

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