Lecture: Comprehending Khipus and the Wari World

A collaboration with the GW Department of Anthropology

Wari, the name given to South America’s first true empire (600–1000 CE), was managed in all likelihood with an important new invention: the khipu, recording devices made entirely of fiber. Using nothing more than colorfully wrapped and knotted cords made of cotton and animal hair (alpaca and/or llama), the Wari and later, the Inka, stored and recorded information much like writing, using color, twist, and knots. In a richly illustrated talk, Jeffrey Splitstoser, assistant research professor with the GW Department of Anthropology and the world’s leading scholar on Wari-style khipus, will present recent research that reveals similarities and differences between ancient South America’s first empires. 

This program is a collaboration with the GW Department of AnthropologyFee: $10/museum members and GW students, faculty, and staff; $15/public. Advance registration is required; space is limited. Register online or call 202-994-7394.