Pablo F. Sendón
The Massif of Ausangate as a Field of Ethnological Research
The Southeastern part of the region of Cuzco (Peru) lies at the foot of the massive mountain range of the Ausangate, exceeding 5000 meters above sea level, which separates the Amazonian basin to the North from the Andean valleys to the South. Owing to the severe ecological conditions of habitat at these high altitudes, the exposure to strong winds, the extreme seasons, and the poverty of the soil, it would appear, at first glance, that any form of human endeavour should be doomed. Nonetheless, all of this region, including its most distant corners that are adjacent to eternal snow, is inhabited by an indigenous Quechua-speaking population whose productive activities, patterns of social organisation, symbolic conceptions and ritual practices, indicates that they constitute a unity that lends itself to be treated as a field of ethnological research. This lecture proposes a definition based on specific ethnographic data collected in Marcapata, the Easternmost district of this part of the Peruvian Andes, a territory that once extended to the entrance of inhospitable lands of the Amazonian Antisuyo.
The conference will be given in Spanish