The 81st Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists (2012)

Mobility and subsistence in the Early Intermediate Period cemetery of Villa El Salvador XII


1AGES, Clarion University of Pennsylvania, 2Central Identification Lab, JPAC

Thursday 4:00-4:15, Galleria North Add to calendar

Villa El Salvador XII is an Early Intermediate Period (100 BC – AD 100) cemetery from the lower Lurín Valley of central Perú. Analysis of cranial deformation, non-specific health indicators, grave goods and entheseal changes suggest two groups used the site, either local fishers and farmers or local farmers and highland immigrants. These studies indicate that the groups were likely exposed to differential patterns of physical behavior. This project tests this hypothesis by examining the presumed subsistence groups for differences in activity and mobility using cross-sectional geometric properties.

Femoral cross-sectional geometric properties were calculated for a series of 48 anterior-posterior and medial-lateral radiographs (24 males and 24 females), standardized for body size. These data were examined for differences in sex, cranial deformation, and presumed subsistence groups. In general, no significant differences were noted across TA, CA, Ix, Iy, J, and Ix/Iy for cranial deformation and presumed subsistence groups. The average Ix/Iy ratio is 1.02 and 1.00 for males and females, respectively, indicating a relatively round shape that is consistent with less mobile populations. Sex was the only variable to show marginal significance with males exhibiting greater CA (p=0.052), J (p=0.066), Iy (p=0.073), and Ix (p=0.097) values. Although expected, these findings suggest that males and females exhibited similar mobility patterns, but that males were engaged in more strenuous physical activity. These results argue against highland immigrants at the while not denying the possibility of sedentary local fishers and farmers in the Villa El Salvador XII cemetery.

Partial funding for this reserach project was provided by NSF BSC grant #0006162.

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