The Expansion, Diversification, and Segmentation of Power in Late Prehispanic Nasca



During the Late Intermediate Period (A.D. 1000–1476) the organization and foundation of power in Nasca was transformed from earlier times. Previously, religious resources were central to the development and maintenance of the political and social hierarchy. After the collapse of the Wari Empire and a period of balkanization, the resources used to establish and maintain power broadened considerably. The expansion of the power base into new realms coincided with an increase in the number of local elites in the drainage. There was no longer a focus on regional ceremonial centers; instead, elites were able to build power through a variety of activities including exchange, craft production (with a focus on utilitarian items), feasting, community-based ritual activities, and probably warfare and defense. During this period the levels of the political hierarchy grew and a more heterarchical type of regional polity developed.