Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino

Native peoples > Chango

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Social organization

It has been suggested that these coastal peoples were organized into patrilocal clans, based on a nuclear or extended family, each independent and economically self-sufficient. Some writers believe that they practiced exogamy, preferring to marry wives from different groups, towns or tribes. Such practices would allow them to maintain networks of relations and foster trade with inland tribes. Slight differences in offerings left at different pre-Hispanic cemeteries suggest some level of social differentiation.
Despite the Changos’ contact with other groups throughout their history, this simple model of social organization seems to have remained virtually unchanged for an extremely long period of time. The arrival of the Inkas, and then the Spanish, caused the most profound changes, restricting the indigenous peoples’ movement by dividing up their territories for economic reasons. The Inka, for example, exercised control over the guano producers and allocated marine resources to groups from particular territories.