10 Shifting Territorialities under the Inka Empire: The Case of the Rapayán Valley in the Central Andean Highlands



I examine the changing patterns of territoriality generated by the Inkas upon their conquest of a middle-range society of the Rapayán Valley in the Upper Marañón drainage of the northern central Andes of Peru. The territorial-hegemonic model as well as Robert Sack's conception of territoriality—considered a strategy of social control through space—are used to discuss architectural and settlement pattern changes characterizing the transition between the Late Intermediate Period (C.E. 1000–1450) and the Late Horizon (Inka; C.E. 1450–1532). I argue that before the Inka conquest, territoriality was achieved through ceremonies honoring the Rapayán Valley's founding ancestors held at the location of highly visible above-ground mortuary monuments distributed across the Rapayán landscape. Upon their conquest of the Rapayán Valley, the Inkas attempted to redefine local territorial practices and categories through various means and used simultaneously direct and indirect strategies of governance. [territoriality, Inka, Andes, Rapayán, Upper Marañón]