Inka History in Knots: Reading Khipus as Primary Sources

Inka History in Knots: Reading Khipus as Primary Sources

by Gary Urton


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781477311998
Publisher: University of Texas Press
Publication date: 04/04/2017
Pages: 319
Sales rank: 841,138
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

A recipient of both MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships, Gary Urton is the Dumbarton Oaks Professor of Pre-Columbian Studies and chair of the Department of Anthropology at Harvard University. He is the author of numerous books and edited volumes on Andean/Quechua cultures and Inka civilization, including Signs of the Inka Khipu: Binary Coding in the Andean Knotted-String Records.

Table of Contents

  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • Outline of the Book
  • Part I. Background
    • 1. What Can We Learn about the Inkas from Study of the Khipus?
    • 2. A Brief Introduction to Tawantinsuyu-the Inka Empire
  • Part II. Reading Khipus in Social, Political, and Religious Registers
    • 3. Cord Notes for Describing an Inka-Era Village on the Southern Coast of Peru
    • 4. The Ancestors' Calendar: Laguna de los Cóndores, Chachapoyas, Northern Peru
    • 5. Constructing the Records of the Palace of Puruchuco, Lima Valley
    • 6. Accounting for the Oracle: Record Keeping at Pachacamac, Lurín Valley
    • 7. The Iconography of Inebriation: Engraved and Sculpted Khipu Bars
  • Part III. Imperial Accounting
    • 8. What Did the Ceque Khipus Look Like?
    • 9. Accounting in the King's Storehouse: Inkawasi, Southern Coast of Peru
    • 10. Counting Heads in Tawantinsuyu
  • Part IV. Colonial Khipus
    • 11. Accounting for Demographic Collapse?
    • 12. Khipus from a Colonial "Revisit" to the Santa Valley: The "Rosetta Khipu"?
  • Part V. Summary and Conclusions
    • 13. Structure and History in the Khipus
  • Appendix. A Khipu Inventory
  • Notes
  • References
  • Index

What People are Saying About This

Sabine Hyland

"This book will be read and cited for decades. Urton’s work is absolutely brilliant."

Terence N. D’Altroy

"My overall impression is one of astonishment and admiration at the insights that Urton has been able to gain through his copious knowledge and meticulous approach. No one else in the world is as well-informed or -positioned to write on this subject."

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