Ceramic assemblages and landscape in the mid-1st millennium Llanos de Mojos, Beni, Bolivia
Abbreviated Journal Title
J. Field Archaeol.
Amazon; Bolivia; ceramics; Arawak language; raised fields; LANGUAGES; AMAZONIA; Archaeology
In the Central Amazon Basin, research has focused on links between spatial patterns of modern language groups and archaeological ceramic assemblages. Amazon Polychrome is a set of stylistically related ceramic assemblages from across the central Amazon dating from A. D. 600 to 1300 that have been linked to Arawak-speaking groups. A related assemblage comes from the Llanos de Mojos (Mojos) in eastern Bolivia; these San Juan ceramics, distributed along the lower Iruyanez River and dated to the early 6th century A. D., are associated with raised field agriculture. San Juan ceramics are allied with Guarita and other Amazon Polychrome assemblages in vessel form, decorative technique, and temper, although they are a subset of a larger range of forms and decorative techniques. This suggests that Mojos and the Central Amazon were part of a regional system; the comparatively early date suggests that Mojos was integral to its development. Language, landscape, and ceramic diversity are as important as the presence of earthworks and Arawak languages for understanding Mojos and its place within the Amazon system. Without denying the importance of Arawak-speaking groups, there is no a priori reason to identify any ceramic assemblage or landscape with a particular language. Equally important are the cultural connections, combinations, and syncretism that are present in a multilingual, multiethnic, and economically complex region.
Journal of Field Archaeology
"Ceramic assemblages and landscape in the mid-1st millennium Llanos de Mojos, Beni, Bolivia" (2011). Faculty Bibliography 2010s. 2055.