| In Discussion

Pre-Columbian Society of New York Lecture Series

Formed in 2014, the Pre-Columbian Society of New York (PCSNY) provides a platform for archaeologists, art historians, and other scholars studying ancient American cultures to share their insights and work with fellow academics and professionals in the New York area. Additionally, the Society endeavors to promote an increased awareness of pre-Hispanic cultures among students and those who possess a strong avocational interest in the field.

Read more on the Pre-Columbian Society of New York's website.

Please check the events calendar for upcoming lectures.

Pre-Columbian Society of New York Logo

2017 Schedule

Thursday, October 26, 2017, 6:00pm
Series:Pre-Columbian Society of New York
Speaker: Terence N. D’Altroy, Loubat Professor of American Archaeology and Director of the Center for Archaeology, Columbia University
Title: Cosmic Order and Inka Rule

Abstract: Many discussions of Inka rule focus on the domination of millions of people, by imposing military control, establishing sustainable governance, and building a vast support infrastructure. Equally important, however, were the efforts the Inkas made to impose their own notions of cosmic and social order on the world at large. This talk explores how the Inkas thought the world worked and how to be successful within it, as they tried to make themselves the indispensable intermediary between humanity and all other powers. Among the key ideas that contributed to practical rule were their notions of life and death (e.g., living ancestral mummies), flexible relations with time and the past, and a landscape in which they shared social space with living mountains and rocks. Those ideas help us to understand how the Inkas managed to rule in a land without writing or a multi-year calendar. Among the sites explored are the major temples, carved stones, and the world’s highest archaeological sites, the mountain peak shrines containing sacrificed children.


April 14, 2016
James Doyle, Assistant Curator, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

March 10, 2016
Richard L. Burger, Professor of Anthropology, Yale University

February 11, 2016
Timothy W. Pugh, Professor of Anthropology, Queens College

November 18, 2015
Justin Kerr, Independent Scholar and creator of the Maya Vase Database

October 15, 2015
Amanda Gannaway, Lecturer in Discipline, Department of Art History and Archaeology, Columbia University)

September 10, 2015
Eloise Quiñones-KeberProfessor Emerita, CUNY Graduate Center / Baruch College

Follow us!

Sign up to our mailing list

If you wish to receive information on our upcoming events, please subscribe to our mailing list.