Tuesday, May 6, 2003

An anthropologist in Peru

Most people who read this site know only that I study technology. But my original training involved the anthropology and archaeology of the Andes. Several seasons of fieldwork in Peru profoundly changed my understandings of the world, and recently I have been attempting to document some of my experiences.

While doing ethnographic fieldwork in the Cuzco region in the summer of 1997, I had the opportunity to participate in a traditional Quechua Wilancha - a native festival of renewal and purification - conducted at the University of Cuzco.

The Wilancha is a celebration in honour of Pachamama - Mother Earth. The celebration is marked with the sacrifice of alpacas and the offering of blood.

I've put some of my photos online here - but please note that some capture the actual sacrifices and are quite graphic.

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