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The Les Indiens

Although other historians including the late Thierry Saignes, Tristan Platt, Olivia Harris, and Xavier Albo have applied anthropological theory or included a few ethnographic observations in their historical studies, Wachtel's Le retour des ancistres: Les indiens Urus de Bolivia, XXe-XVIE siecle, essai d'histoire regressive is the first fun-scale melding of these two approaches. Wachtel provides a full ethnographic community study with major historical underpinnings based on written records and oral testimony. In this sense, his work is unique in the field of Andean studies. Wachtel's subject is the community of Chipaya (near Oruro), which contains the largest extant group of Uru (or Puquina) speakers in Bolivia. From the time of contact to the present day, the Uru have been considered the poorest of the altiplano Indians, a group historically exploited by their Aymara neighbors.

The Les Indiens



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