Building a Bridge Without a Plan; Erica Machulak; Humanities

Peru – Qhapaq Ñan, Andean Road System

An endangered language and ancient lore allow Quechua communities to cross the Apurímac River in Peru.

Twelve thousand feet above sea level in the mountainous Canas province of southern Peru, Quechua women with long braids, ribbon-decked hats, and technicolor skirts cluster cross-legged on the ground, chatting as they twist dry grass between their palms and shape it into long, thin plaits called q’eswa. Every year for the past six centuries, each of their families has contributed 40 human wingspans, approximately 210 feet, of q’eswa to build the Q’eswachaka, the only surviving rope bridge of the 200 or more that once connected the Inca Empire.

Read more


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s