The Handbook of South American Archaeology

  • Helaine Silverman
  • William H. Isbell

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxvi
  2. Introduction

    1. Helaine Silverman
      Pages 3-26
  3. Early Occupations Of South America

    1. Tom D. Dillehay
      Pages 29-43
    2. Bernardo T. Arriaza, Vivien G. Standen, Vicki Cassman, Calogero M. Santoro
      Pages 45-58
    3. Luis Alberto Borrero
      Pages 59-77
  4. Environment And Subsistence

    1. Daniel H. Sandweiss, James B. Richardson III
      Pages 93-104
    2. Peter W. Stahl
      Pages 121-130
    3. Mark S. Aldenderfer
      Pages 131-143
    4. Daniel H. Sandweiss
      Pages 145-156
    5. Gustavo Politis
      Pages 235-260
  5. Lowland Moundbuilders

    1. Stéphen Rostain
      Pages 279-302
    2. Maria Dulce Gaspar, Paulo DeBlasis, Suzanne K. Fish, Paul R. Fish
      Pages 319-335
  6. Continental Variations In Non-State Complexity

  7. Demographic And Cultural Expansions

    1. Shelia Pozorski, Thomas Pozorski
      Pages 607-631
    2. Krzysztof Makowski
      Pages 633-657
    3. Francisco Silva Noelli
      Pages 659-670
    4. Richard L. Burger
      Pages 681-703
  8. States And Empires Of The Central Andes

    1. Luis Jaime Castillo Butters, Santiago Uceda Castillo
      Pages 707-729
    2. Jerry D. Moore, Carol J. Mackey
      Pages 783-807
    3. R. Alan Covey
      Pages 809-830
  9. Interactions

    1. Francisco Valdez
      Pages 865-888
    2. Warren B. Church, Adriana von Hagen
      Pages 903-926
    3. John H. Walker
      Pages 927-939
    4. Mario A. Rivera
      Pages 963-977

About this book


Handbook of South American Archaeology
Edited by
Helaine Silverman
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL, USA


William H. Isbell
State University of New York, Binghamton, NY, USA

The Handbook of South American Archaeology has been created as a major reference work for archaeologists working in South America, professors and their upper-division undergraduate and graduate students in South American archaeology courses including areal courses (Central Andes, North Andes, tropical lowlands), archaeologists working elsewhere in the world who want to learn about South American prehistory in a single volume. 

The contributions of this seminal handbook have been commissioned from leading local and global authorities on South America. Authors present the dynamic evolutionary processes of the ancient societies and principal geographical regions of the continent and consider issues such as environmental setting and ecological adaptations, social equality/inequality, identity formation, long-distance/intercultural interaction, religious systems and their material manifestations, ideological orientations, and political and economic organization as these developed over time.

The volume is organized thematically to promote and facilitate geographical comparisons, notably between the Andes and greater Amazonia. The bibliography section of each chapter is a valuable research tool in itself for readers wishing to delve deeper into the particular topics under consideration. Of particular merit and originality is the final section dealing with the ethics and practice of archaeology in South America today with each contribution written by a local scholar.

This edited work presents long-term research results while simultaneously highlighting the most exciting new research and greatest archaeological problems recently resolved or still awaiting solution. Chapters are written in accessible language and each contribution includes maps and many other figures and photographs to illustrate the text.

Handbook of South American Archaeology belongs on the bookshelf of every archaeologists working or living in South American but also will be of interest to those who study larger anthropological issues - such as cultural adaptation and state formation - in the prehistoric and historic periods.


Chavín de Huántar Chinchorro archaeological patrimony archaeology of agriculture chimú empire inca empire mochicas pleistocene history pre-hispanic chiefdoms pre-inca prehistoric funeral practice quipu

Editors and affiliations

  • Helaine Silverman
    • 1
  • William H. Isbell
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of IllinoisUrbanaUSA
  2. 2.Department of AnthropologyState University of New York BinghamtonBinghamtonUSA

Bibliographic information