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Beyond the Nasca LinesAncient Life at La Tiza in the Peruvian Desert$
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Christina A. Conlee

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780813062020

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813062020.001.0001

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The Nasca Culture

The Nasca Culture

Civilization in the Desert

(p.94) 6 The Nasca Culture
Beyond the Nasca Lines

Christina A. Conlee

University Press of Florida

The Nasca culture of the Early Intermediate Period was the first large, complex, regional integrated society centered in the region. This chapter explores the nature of complexity during the Nasca culture and presents new data from La Tiza that challenges previous interpretations. Issues of subsistence practices, irrigation, trade, economic organization, and craft production are covered along with an in-depth discussion of religion and the practices surrounding the geoglyphs and trophy head taking. The data from La Tiza are presented and, based on this evidence, it is argued that population was larger, settlements were more varied, and the civilization was more hierarchical and politically integrated than some scholars have suggested. Religion and ritual practices played a key role in the formation and expansion of this culture, with ceremonial centers and religious leaders at the center of the power structure for much of the period.

Keywords:   Nasca culture, Early Intermediate Period, religion, geoglyphs, trophy heads, irrigation, craft production, complexity

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