Economical systems are what make or break a state. They have the power to either keep people together with shared interests, or break them because of conflicts. The Incan Empire had a huge effect on the political and economic structure which is relevant even today.
The Empire had risen to power in the 15th century and was an accumulation of the cultures followed in the Pacific Ocean and the Andes Mountains. Because it had covered a diverse topographical area, it was known to be one of the most diverse economic systems.
If your professor has decided to assign this essay topic to you, you are in luck because you will face no difficulty in tracking information about it. However, if you are looking for an easy way out and want to narrow down the subject, here are 10 facts about the Incan Empire which can be used to write a creative and thought-provoking essay as well as our guide for this kind of assignment.
- The Inca Empire was founded by Pachacuti, who had envisioned to rule and conquer various regions of the world. Though the Inca Empire was vast in its area (five times larger than the modern day France), it lasted a short time and had fallen during the Spanish conquest in 1536.
- During the rule of the Incan Empire, the Andeans tried to take control of the areas which were governed by the Incan people. However, these efforts were unsuccessful because there was a lot of political fragmentation and unrest in the two centuries when the Empire came to power.
- The establishment of the Incan Empire ran through the entire western flank and covered descending mountains as well as plain and desert areas. It was due to these diversified lands that the Incan Empire was rich in resources. Though these resources mainly helped with the development and cultivation of the empire, it also gave people the opportunity to grow in social and recreational activities.
- Because the resources and development were being exploited by some, a dedicated political system came into power, which helped form a systematic authority. These political and monetary systems capitalized on the goods being transported and a proper political hierarchy and system was formed.
- The population of the Incan empire is estimated to be somewhere between 9 to 13 million during that time. Because these inhabitants were already established in the areas and were aware of the agricultural prowess the land had possessed, it was easier for them to control things. As a result, even though many historians believe that the Incas came into power because of their military power, the main reason is thought to be the acceptance of the local people.
- One of the reasons why it is believed that the locals accepted the Incan Empire and its rule was because of their organizational abilities. The Incas were smart in their transformation of the locals because instead of using force which would result in revolts and unrest, they used religion to convert the communities that they had conquered. Their prime objective was to appear as forgiving and understanding conquerors and so they made sure that the locals were offered peaceful incorporation.
- The Chieftains of the local agricultural establishments who didn’t display any signs of resistance were requested to join the hierarchy of the political establishment of the empire. Marriage between local Chieftains with royal family was a very common technique used by the Inca to gain over lands peacefully. However, forcefully removing communities and massacre also occurred when the locals resisted or rebelled. The driving factor behind the Inca expansion was building an empire that eliminates the savagery of war. Their motto was to save the people from themselves and bring stability in a land of chaos.
- Unification of religion was the ultimate driving force for Pachacuti’s conquest. The acceptance of the empire by the local groups came with the acceptance of the Incan Religion. Pachacuti exaggerated the supremacy of Viracocha over the other Gods. This was the defining factor for the establishment of Inca Empire and a pact was formed once the interests of Pachacuti and the locals began to match.
- The Inca stepped into the traditions of the Andean people by incorporating ancestor worship. The mummification of kings created a sense of familiarity for the local people as it was a link between the Incan people with their Gods. Maintenance of this tradition became important for the higher order of Inca Empire because it helped maintain a political order. However, the mummification, maintenance and grandeur display of the dead kings was only possible if there was a steady income and this directly depended on the conquests. Everything acquired during these conquests was put into the perseverance of tradition by the Sapa Inca.
- The government system of the Inca Empire was based on theocracy. Everything belonged to the Sapa Inca which included land, gold, silver, labor and people. Women were considered to be their property and therefore adultery was stated as a crime. The state was responsible for feeding the people and government officials were held accountable if someone was left hungry.
When you start reading about the history, religion, economics and politics of the Incan Empire, you will realize that there is a world of information which cannot be put into one single essay. This is why it is crucial that you analyze these facts and decide on a topic which seems interesting and intriguing. Further you will find our guide on how to write an economics essay on the Inca Empire as well as our selected set of subtopics to choose from.
Baquedano, E., & Zabé, M. (2011). Eyewitness Aztec. London: DK Pub.
Bernand, C., & Bahn, P. G. (1994). The Incas: People of the sun. New York: Harry N. Abrams.
D’Altroy, T. N. (n.d.). The Incas.
Hemming, J. (1970). The conquest of the Incas. New York: Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich.
Jones, D. M. (2012). The complete illustrated history of the Inca Empire: A comprehensive encyclopedia of the Incas and other ancient peoples of South America with more than 1000 photographs. London: Lorenz.
MacQuarrie, K. (2008). The last days of the Incas. New York: Simon & Schuster Paperbacks.
Newman, S. (2010). True Book: The Inca Empire. Scholastic Canada.