Articles

The Reliability of 16th-Century European Claims about Pueblo Lifestyles: An Archaeological Test

Author: Carol A. Chase (University of Arizona)

  • The Reliability of 16th-Century European Claims about Pueblo Lifestyles: An Archaeological Test

    Articles

    The Reliability of 16th-Century European Claims about Pueblo Lifestyles: An Archaeological Test

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Abstract

Sixteenth-century Europeans explored the New World to expand their sponsors' territories, to acquire wealth, and to convert souls. Today, archaeologists research the peoples about whom the explorers wrote. Although sometimes inaccurate, the explorers' accounts can provide insights into daily life that the archaeological record cannot. On the other hand, archaeological data fills in many gaps about Pueblo lifeways that the explorers failed to mention. However, both sources must be used with caution, since both are prone to biases. This paper compares the archaeological and the narrative information on precontact- and contact- period Pueblo religion, material resources, and diet and points to the pitfalls of excluding either of these two information sources. It concludes that a more accurate reconstruction of the lifeways of the Pueblo people will combine, among other sources, both the 16th-century explorers' narratives and the archaeological record.

How to Cite: Chase C.A., (1993) “The Reliability of 16th-Century European Claims about Pueblo Lifestyles: An Archaeological Test”, Arizona Anthropologist 10.

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Published on
01 Jan 1993
Peer Reviewed