Prior to this summer, I had been involved in archaeological research in Germany and Peru. Previously in Peru, I worked on the north coast just outside of Trujillo. For this trip, I set out to get to know the people and landscapes of four regions in the highlands of Peru. Approximately 3 weeks each were spent in the provinces of Arequipa and Ayacucho. I also spent one week in Cuzco and another in Junin. In the city of Arequipa, I attended a symposium and got into contact with local researchers at several museums. I also spent a good amount of time in and around the town of Cabanaconde in the lower Colca valley. Here I met local landowners, officials, guides, and other researchers. I visited archaeological sites, took photographs, and even made preliminary maps while investigating prehistoric domestic architecture and agricultural terraces. In Ayacucho, I met with local archaeologists and did some survey around the valleys of Ayacucho and Huanta. We surveyed the land for sites, structures, artifacts, and agricultural land. In Cuzco and Junin, I met with local archaeologists and professors and visited sites. In each location, I accomplished similar things. I made contact with people that will be important to know should I undertake dissertation research in one of these regions. I collected preliminary data so that future decisions on research and research design are better informed. Finally, I became acquainted with the people, the archaeology, and the politics of archaeological research in each region to better understand what will be needed to commence my dissertation research.
September 25, 2013