Season 2 quarter 2 June
The war against the
amazone part 1
against the amazone part 1 - Surinam gold rush.
Suriname's vast and ancient rainforests remain one of the world's
best-kept natural secrets, but the global demand for an age-old mineral
threatens to destroy them.
Record high gold prices over the past decade have triggered a massive
gold rush across the country and the Amazon at large, resulting in the
destruction of thousands of hectares of rainforests and the
contamination of major rivers with highly toxic materials.
Caught in the middle of this environmental devastation are indigenous
and Maroon (contemporary descendants of formerly enslaved Africans)
communities, whose livelihoods are increasingly tied to partaking in
mining activities within their territories, with detrimental
consequences for their well-being
So we may have thought that we were done with the Amazon burnings but we
are so wrong! Because the burnings might seem to be over but that might
be temporarily because there are more plunderers, now in suriname not
spreading fire but plundering the earth for gold. There are four
players: the poor who try to catch the crumbs and there are olmomoroco,
I am gold and canada who dig deep with their heavy machines. And the
last named gain the most. But the president of Brasil bolsonaro , plays
a role too, read more here
Brasilian war against the amazone.
Surinam by far cannot be compared to brasil because what borsonaro did
and does is reason enough for him stand trial before the international
court of justice in then Hague. He and others kolonised the Brasiian
amazone and buldorezed deforresting thousands of trees for wood, gold
and soya all for export and for borsonaros personal gain. When anybody,
small farmers, environmentalist or others stood against him got killed.
So I don't want to continue on this black page of Brasil but instead
want to ask your attention for the indigenous:
the Gavião. 70%
of the population was lost, the Gavião survived the population crisis
and reconstructed their way of life. The conception of Kaikoturé village,
built in 1984, translates the Parkatêjê's project for the future:
reproducing the traditional circular layout of Timbira villages, it
possesses brick houses linked to water, electricity and drainage systems
The name 'Gavião'
('Hawk') was attributed to various
groups by 19th
century travellers impressed by their bellicose character. Among those
so called, Curt Nimuendajú qualified those who lived in the Tocantins
river basin as 'western,' 'of the west' or 'of the forest', so as to
distinguish them from the
and Krinkatí of
the upper Pindaré in Maranhão State, peoples also known by the same
In the first
half of the 20th century, the 'Western Gavião' were distributed in three
local groupings, named by themselves in accordance with the position
they occupied in the Tocantins basin. One of these was called Parkatêjê
(where par means foot, down-river; katê means owner; and jê means people),
'the down-river people.' Another grouping was called Kyikatêjê (where
kyi means head), 'the up-river people:' due to warfare between the two
groups at the start of the 20th century, the latter took refuge up-river
of the Tocantins, in Maranhão State as a result, the Kyikatêjê are also
designated as the 'Maranhão group' (to avoid confusion with the Pukôobjêo
and Krinkatí). The third grouping, which became known as the 'Mountain
group' due to their self-designation Akrãtikatêjê (where akrãti means
mountain), occupied the headwaters of the Capim river.
they are all reunited, the distinction between the three groupings
remains marked. A self-designation common to all does exist, though, as
the signpost at the entry to the new village indicates: the 'Comunidade
Indígena Parkatêjê' ('Parkatêjê Indigenous Community'), a name actually
created by the Gavião aFFs an expression of the autonomy gained by them
in 1976, and an indication of the new developments taking place in their
From the beginning 'till now Brail
has been split up by a river with on the rigts the kolonists and on left
Gavião and andb
The Gavião speak a
dialect of the Eastern
belonging to the Gêo family.
onwards, the use of Portuguese spread in an intense form with the
regular functioning of the Funai Post school and with the
intensification of relations with various segments of Brazilian national
society - a change occurring precisely at a day-to-day level, including
among children and adolescents.
On the other
hand, the resumption of long-term ceremonial cycles accentuated the use
of the original language on ritual occasions: during songs, speeches,
The Gavião live in
Maria Indigenous Territory,
located in the municipality of Bom Jesus do Tocantins in the south-east
of Paráo State. Situated within a terra firme zone of tropical rainforest,
it is bordered by the Flecheiras and Jacundáo creeks, affluents of the
right bank of the middle Tocantins river.
The Mãe Maria
stream, whose source lies within the indigenous territory, supplied the
name for the Post set up by the SPI in 1964 by the side of a narrow
track that, three years later, became one of the first state highways in
the region: the PA-70 (as it became known locally, although it has been
the PA-332 since 1982). This highway was the first link between the
municipality of Marabáo and the Belém-Brasília road before construction
of the Transamazonian highway. In 1967 it traversed the immense Brazil
nut tree forest making up the Gavião territory along its entire length -
about 22 km running north-south.
our land our spiriit
In 1977, the
south-western limit of the Indigenous Territory was affected by the
construction of another highway, the PA-150, which sets out from Morada
Nova - km 12 of the PA-70 - in the direction of Castanhal, a
municipality close to Belém. The construction of these two highways
accelerated the effective disordered occupation of this section of
eastern Amazonia, encouraging the systematic invasion of Gavião land
both by settlers and by infrastructural works for the state projects
under development in the region.
indigenous territory was cut still further by Eletronorte's power
transmission line, originating at the Tucuruí Hydroelectric Plant, and
by the Carajáos Railway in 1982. Some 40 km from the city of Marabáo, the
region's main urban nucleus, and only 30 km from the settlement of São
Félix, the Gavião live in Kaikoturé village - one of the names of the
leader of the group, Krohokrenhum - which was inaugurated in July 1984.
It is situated about one kilometre from the PA-70 highway.
O mesmo Krohokrenhum,
cantador desde pequeno, no páotio da aldeia. Foto: Saulo Petean, 1983
From 1975 onwards,
twenty-five years after the 'pacification' phase during which they lost
70% of their population, the Gavião began to exhibit a clear trend
towards demographic growth. The process of recuperation involved
solutions such as the re-integration of Gavião men and women who had
been raised among whites or other indigenous peoples, marriage with
women from the regional non-Indian population, the search for wives
among the Pukôobjêo,
and the incorporation of families or individuals from non-Timbira
indigenous ethnic groups and even non-Indians, in a conscious policy of
restoring the size of the population.
In 1985, the
Gavião population numbered 176 people; however, also living in the
Kaikoturé village were another 16 Guarani, a
man and 17
people'). The group was primarily made up of children and youths (from 0
to 20 years old), who made up more than 60% of the total. In global
terms, apronounced imbalance between the sexes could be observed in
favour of the men, though this was beginning to be corrected by a higher
birth rate among female infants.
Parkatêjê overcame the population crisis and today present a population
of 338 individuals, including many children and youths (Jane Beltrão
History of contact
Based on 19th
century travellers' reports, Nimuendajú gives the precise location of
the Gavião as the headwaters of the Jacundáo and Moju rivers, where
indeed they maintained their large villages until the 1960s. The
contacts and relations established by the Gavião Indians in this area
with the expanding frontiers of Brazilian society passed through
distinct phases, corresponding to the exploration of economic resources
on the Tocantins river. The first phase was made up of fleeting and
peaceful visual contacts between Indians and whites when the pioneers
used the shores of the river as resting places. This lasted until the
end of the 19th century, during which period there was no need nor
motivation to penetrate deeper into the forest.
At the start
of the 20th century, forest extractavism (rubber, copaíba oil and
finally Brazil nuts) modified the socio-economic infrastructure of the
middle Tocantins and the Burgo do ltacaiúnas, which eventually became
the town of Marabáo. The regional population's concern to neutralize the
Gavião dates in particular from the start of Brazil nut exploration -
around 1920 - when the forests on the right shore of the Tocantins river
were penetrated in order to locate Brazil nut trees.
traditions refer to this period, marked by the intensification of
relations with 'civilized folk,' the kupêon. According to Krohokrenhum's
account, the Gavião started to 'accustom' themselves to the presence of
the whites in their territory. The relations at first seemed to be
friendly as they obtained industrialized goods from the kupêon, such as
machetes and axes. Soon, though, violent episodes occurred, with deaths
on both sides, especially after the killing of one of the indigenous
chiefs by Brazil nut harvesters on the lower Tauri river. The Gavião
retaliated and killed three harvesters, in addition to burning down
their huts (Folha do Norte 25-03-38). Thus, a cycle of revenge killings
marked the intensification of relations with non-Indians.
between the Gavião and the Brazil nut harvesters escalated in scale as
the product assumed more importance in the regional economy. These armed
confrontations took place along a 180 km stretch on the right shore of
the Tocantins river, including lands in the contemporary municipalities
of Tucuruí, Itupiranga, Marabáo and São João do Araguaia. During this
period of the 1930s and 1940s, the Gavião were accused of practising
'great acts of savagery,' and in Marabáo, the region's main commercial
centre, local politicians, merchants and Brazil nut plantation owners
organized expeditions to exterminate the Gavião.
It was only in
1937 that the SPI set up a Post on the Ipixuna river with the aim of
'attracting' the Gavião. Almost immediately, various Indians started to
visit the Post in order to receive tools and other 'gifts'. But on one
of these visits, "they found the Post lacking tools and above all manioc
flour, upon which they showed their discontent and killed one of the
workers with a number of arrow shots. They ceased frequenting the Post,
having established peaceful contacts at other points on the Tocantins,
including at a place called Ambauáo, near to Tucuruí" (Arnaud 1975: 37).
In 1945, the
SPI changed location and set up a post in Ambauáo, resuming its
attraction work. The different local groupings into which the Gavião
were then divided varied in the way they visited the area: some included
violent incursions, which were widely reported in the national press in
alarmist fashion between 1948 and 1951 (such as, for example, the
material published in the Estado do Paráo on 29-01-48 and in the Cruzeiro
of 31-03-51; see Arnaud 1984: 12-13).
belligerent ethos of the Gavião, however, also regulated norms of
territorial expansion of the various groups within the same system of
social relations. Not infrequently, internal conflicts were motivated by
thefts of products from swiddens, accusations of sorcery or the
abduction of women" (Arnaud 1984). It was in this context at the start
of the 20th century that the splits occurred which generated the three
local groupings of the Gavião previously mentioned.
The start of
the 1950s was marked by the decisive rupture of a traditional order: the
operation of the system of social organization was fatally weakened by
the break up of common territories, the arrival of new diseases and
consequent depopulation. The complete absence of conditions for
resistance by the local groupings into which the Gavião had segmented
made 'surrender' their only chance for survival, seeking contact with
the kupêon - the 'civilized folk' or the 'Christians.'
death of the old Gavião chief - called 'Indiuma' by the regional
population - who had rejected any contact with the kupêon throughout his
life, Krohokrenhum's leadership during this period over the few members
of the Cocal group, a Parkatêjê village, began to take hold. His career
as a leader and singer is related to his personal courage and that of
his followers in approaching the non-Indians.
contacts with the Cocal group took place in 1956, through an expedition
organized by the Dominican Fra Gil Gomes Leitão and by a lieutenant from
the reserve army in the service of the SPI. With few resources, they
procured an encounter with the Gavião in order to prevent the punitive
expeditions organized with the support of local politicians from
attaining their objective: extermination of the Indians so as to enable
the exploration of the Brazil nut trees on which they had fixed their
contact, many people from the Cocal group went to the town of ltupiranga,
where they stayed for about four months, making their living by
performing small tasks for the local population - filling pots of water,
collecting firewood or providing public displays of their archery skills
- in exchange for clothing and food. The outcome was an even more
drastic depopulation when they later returned to the village and spread
epidemics of influenza and measles.
the town, the group had abandoned their old village to take refuge in a
location lacking any systematic assistance from the SPI: their means of
subsistence were precarious and the lands were already occupied by the
regional population. According to a manuscript by Fra José, a Dominican
who visited the Gavião, the area had been acquired by a deputy from
small swiddens and began to adopt personal names in Portuguese, which -
like the use of clothing - made up part of a specific system of
communication and interaction with the kupêon who supplied them with
industrialized goods. The SPI agents encouraged the Indians to collect
Brazil nuts in exchange for knives, ammunition and food items. The
forest of Brazil nut trees where they had located - leased by a 'Seu
Benedito' who 'allowed' them to settle there, thereby becoming a
'friend' of the Gavião - started to be exploited individually by them
according to Da Matta (1967: 115). The produce was sold in Itupiranga
and the transportation sponsored by a functionary from the
municipality's local council who came to work as an SPI agent among the
group. The Gavião were thus initiated into the mechanics of buying and
selling during this period at the onset of the 1960s.
In contrast to
the Cocal group, the 'Mountain group' went to settle at the end of the
1960s at the site known as Ambauáo, where an SPI Post (and pastures) had
already existed since the beginning of the 1940s. The systematic
contacts with the inhabitants of Tucuruí, situated half an hour by motor
boat from the Post headquarters, led to the Gavião ceasing to be seen as
starting to supply the local market with animal game, fish and Brazil
nuts. For the town dwellers they had become 'believers'. Indeed, from
1964, members of the New Tribes Mission of Brazil had installed
themselves on the 'Mountain'.
In 1943 a
tract of land had been conceded to the Gavião Indians by decree of the
then Federal Governor of Paráo State. According to Cotrim, during this
period the Gavião used to disembark on a beach
Tocantins river in front of the Mãe Maria Brazil nut forest and
fraternize with the administrator. The latter deduced that the Indians
must inhabit the headwaters of the Mãe Maria creek and undertook to
claim this land for them, an area located between the Flecheiras and
Jacundáo rivers, one league from the shore of the Tocantins, a zone where
he (as administrator) harvested Brazil nuts (Soares 1983).
This area came
to be leased to third parties by the SPI from 1947 onwards for a sum
considered 'derisory,' but in 1965 the SPI began to receive proposals
for new leases at extremely high prices. With the opening of the PA-70
in 1964 the area stirred much interest and dozens of settlers moved into
the indigenous area. Observing that the SPI functionaries were unable to
contain the area's occupation, Antonio Cotrim decided to convince 28
Gavião people in Itupiranga to move to live there.
expectations of the SPI agents for "inaugurating the economic life" of
the Post were linked to the efficiency of the Gavião’s action in
dispelling the Brazil nut harvesters who had settled there. The
stereotypes then prevalent concerning the Gavião were utilized and
reinforced in the expeditions which concentrated on a particular section
of the road, between the Flecheiras and Jacundáo rivers, with precise
At the end of
the 1960s, the penetration by settlers and land dealers, facilitated by
the opening of the PA-70 highway and the rapid advance of cattle
ranching, ended up confining under considerable pressure the group that
had taken refuge in the Maranhão, in a place that became known as
Igarapé dos Frades, in Saranzal, close to Imperatriz (Arnaud 1975:
72-76). Towards the end of 1968, the area where the 'Mountain group' was
found - close to the PA-70, but 150 km from Mãe Maria - was interdicted
by decree (nr 63.515 of 31-10-68), a measure that failed to be respected
by the pioneer population. The Gavião reacted violently, leading to
deaths on both sides, which provoked widespread panic throughout the
region (0 Estado de S. Paulo 30-05-72).
In order to
create definitive contact with the group, a section stretching several
kilometres along the PA-70 was interdicted by the Army, Funai, the Paráo
State Government and the Federal Police. In this way, the Attraction
Front, headed by Cotrim and aided during the final stage of attraction
by interpreters from the Mountain group, established contacts before the
end of 1968. Faced with the potential 'massacre' to which the group was
exposed in this locality, Funai negotiated their transfer to Mãe Maria.
Exploiting a sum of money supposedly covering the expenses of resettling
the group, the area was handed over to an regional company specialized
in land claims. Today, this area, known as 'Cinelâondia' is crossed by
the Carajáos railway and is occupied by around 15,000 families of
settlers in countless small communities.
the government policy of gradual occupation of the so-called 'empty
spaces' of Amazonia, the start of the 1970s saw the initial developments
of two large construction projects: the Transamazonian highway and the
Tucuruí Hydroelectric Plant, the latter intended to accompany the
exploration of minerals in the Serra de Carajáos. Funai therefore decided
to remove the Mountain group to the Mãe Maria Indigenous Park, where six
unmarried boys had arrived in 1971. The following year, construction of
the Tucuruí Hydroelectric Plant dam began, precisely in the area
conceded to the Gavião in 1945.
The contact leader
O líder Krohokrenhum
assinando um acordo com a Companhia Vale do Rio Doce, autorizando a
passagem da estrada de ferro Carajáos dentro da áorea Gavião mediante
indenização. Foto: Cynthia Brito, 1984
was involved in the various phases of contact with the kupêon from
their outset, having been the principle motivational force behind the
exchanges. He took the lead throughout the entire process and at a
certain point came to believe that his people were really close to the
end. Exercising his leadership in fact amounted to deciding for the
whole group: from the transference to Mãe Maria, to the submission to
Brazil nut harvesting, to the growing discontentment and definitive
rupture of this system of labour.
post-contact period, his prestige grew as a leader of the Gavião, who
little by little were assembling in a single village. As his peers
recognize, Krohokrenhum is a great singer and skilled archer, and has
been the main catalyst behind resuming the ceremonial cycles in an
intensive fashion from 1976 onwards. He is the paramount mediator in the
event of internal conflicts or in the face of external threats; in any
situation which could place the group's harmony at risk. Guardian of the
integrity of their territory, still heavily under threat from the
intense process of occupation in the Marabáo region, Krohokrenhum is well
aware that the confrontation with non-Indians is a never-ending
is reluctant to leave the territory of the 'Parkatêjê Indigenous
Community.' He usually sends emissaries and some people among the Gavião
specialize in 'external affairs' (commerce, banks, Funai, Brazil nut
exporters, etc.) in the neighbouring settlements or in Marabáo, Belém and
Brasília. Krohokrenhum does occasionally travel, but for a long time now
he has insisted that important negotiations concerning the fate of the
Gavião and involving representatives of Federal agencies should take
place in the village itself.
Back in 1977,
he gained notoriety for his resounding refusal of an invitation from the
Home Minister, Rangel Reis, to appear in Brasília at the act of signing
a bank loan for the Brazil nut harvest. The same style continued in
later negotiations with representatives of Eletronorte and CVRD which
ended up in large indemnities. Krohokrenhum is fully aware of the
reputation the Gavião have acquired in the region and wider Brazil, "the
Indians who became rich with indemnity payments." He is unhappy with
most of the versions circulated by the press concerning the changes
taking place in the life of the village.
The firmness of
his leadership and his prestige as chief of the Gavião is undeniable,
despite sporadic crises in his authority. In July of 1985, for example,
in a dramatic and unusual gesture, with great repercussions in the
village's life, Krohokrenhum publicly broke his gourd rattle and his bow
and ordered destroyed the logs that were to be used in a 'race,' after a
group of youths - recently arrived from 'commerce' - preferred to play
football in the village patio instead of taking part in a ritual
involving songs and dances. Speaking little with the
but the author of long and frequent discourses on the village patio,
Krohokrenhum has been the guiding force behind the Gavião's wide-ranging
forms of resistance.
Brazil nuts to Gavião's Brazil nuts
of all the local groups to the
Mãe Maria Indigenous Territory
allowed Funai to
implant the necessary work force for developing an activity that ended
up making this post the largest producer of Brazil nuts at the start of
the 1970s. The system of economic exploration to which the Gavião were
submitted as a labour force of harvesters lasted ten years from 1966 to
1976. During this period, the Gavião recovered in demographic terms as a
result of the medical care provided by Funai.
years, the manipulation of the distribution of income from the Brazil
nut harvests through the system of paying 'commissions' to the leaders
by the local Funai agents eventually generated widespread
dissatisfaction among the Gavião. At the same time, though, the
compulsory nature of the Brazil nut work during six months of the year
and the intense physical effort required in order to obtain goods that
had now become indispensable, prevented the realization of traditional
activities, such as long-term ceremonies.
decided to visit the Belém Delegacy personally so as to resolve the
question of the 'commission' paid by Funai as remuneration for the
Gavião's work in the Brazil nut harvesting. In a vehement dialogue with
the Gavião leader, the then regional delegate claimed that from that
point on he would cease to market the Mão Maria Brazil nuts produce,
since the Gavião had revealed themselves to be intolerant of the system
'accepted' at the other indigenous posts producing Brazil nuts.
In the same
year, the anthropologist Iara Ferraz was undertaking preliminary surveys
for the implementation of the Emergency Project for the Co-ordination of
the Brazil Nut Harvest by the Gavião of Mãe Maria. She debated with the
Gavião the concrete possibility of marketing the production directly
with exporters without the mediation of Funai.
initial administrative and political obstructions coming from the
Delegacy and the DGPC in Brasilia (delay in the issue of an initial
allowance and inadequate supplies), the end of the 1976 harvest
represented the conquest of their autonomy for the Gavião. Assuming the
role of producers, the Gavião succeeded in reaffirming themselves in
terms of the regional population, becoming both admired and respected.
At the same time, they reassumed an attitude of fully affirming an
ethnic identity that had been under threat. In order to express the
difference in relation to the "time when Funai was boss," the Gavião
assumed the collective and institutionalized self-designation 'Parkatêjê
Indigenous Community' while simultaneously undertaking the institution
of the 'canteen' schema for redistributing merchandise at a larger scale.
transformations taking place also extended to the definitive rupture
with the MNTB agents who had attached themselves to the 'Maranhão group'
since 1971, as well as the complete modification of relations with Funai
workers. In congruence with the model of occupation and expansion
occurring in the region, the Gavião were visibly attracted to a series
of 'deals' - later named 'community projects' - which appeared lucrative
to them and which would increase the Community's fund of resources.
emphasis of this enterprise was on direct marketing with exporters, the
Gavião started to use the traditional means of market speculation in
both Marabáo and Belém, a practice common to regional producers. The
'buying and selling contracts' for Brazil nut lots were signed by two
representatives of the 'Parkatêjê Indigenous Community.'
Brazil nuts,' as distinct from 'Funai's Brazil nuts,' were sold in Belém
- the production shipped there in lorries hired by the community - due
to a few advantages such as a higher price and correction of the
standard-measure. In Marabáo, this measure is supplemented by the
so-called 'hectolitre head,' about 10 litres, in order to compensate the
buyer for loss or damage to the product before it reaches their deposits
consequence, the Gavião established personal and direct relationships
with certain sections of Brazilian national society who they had not
known until then, groups represented above all by exporters and bank
agents. Financial control of the harvest and any other commercial
operations was effected in 1876, through cash registers maintained by
two members of the 'Mountain' group, both Krohokrenhum's assistants.
This work was accompanied by the Gavião chief and aided by the head of
the Post. These two representatives signed contracts and administered
the bank accounts in name of the 'Parkatêjê Indigenous Community,' as
indicated on the new cheque books which quickly substituted the old Post
Eletronorte and the Companhia
Vale do Rio Doce
strengthening of Gavião identity from 1976 onwards was expressed both
through the new relations established with whites and through the
re-conjoining of the productive cycles with the long term ceremonial
cycles. The reconfiguration of Gavião society was also effected through
the re-arrangement of the links between the previously separate local
groupings, which in turn used to present subdivisions into smaller
sections. It was in this context that construction of the large village
reuniting all the western Gavião in the Mãe Maria Indigenous Territory
The new village,
named Kaikoturé, is made up by 33 houses arranged in a circle (which has
a diameter of about 200 metres), the traditional format of Timbira villages
re-adopted by the Gavião. A wide path circles the village in front of
the houses, while various radial paths lead to the central patio where
all ceremonial activities are performed.
residence pattern - the husband goes to live in the house of his wife
who remains in her mother's house - was abandoned following the
depopulation occurring after contact. This practice was later resumed in
the old village of Mãe Maria, assembled in residential segments formed
by nuclear families interlinked on the maternal side. In general, groups
of real or classificatory sisters remain spatially close - living in the
same segment - after marrying.
The houses of
the new village were built using brick with blue painted walls and with
doors and windows painted white. They are covered with clay roofing
tiles. All the houses are connected to water, electricity and drainage
house has two floors. On the ground floor there is a veranda, a hall for
important meetings, a TV room (where many people meet at night, mostly
youngsters). On the first floor: a veranda, a small room and three
bedrooms for Krohokrenhum's family. At the back of his house there is
another brick building with the kitchen and a large veranda where meals
are taken. The daily morning meetings involving all the men take place
of the 'modern' regional style was the outcome of multiple pressures
exerted by hire firms, local sellers of industrialized construction
material and tutelary agents, especially after the Gavião had received
indemnization from Eletronorte in 1980, when construction of the power
line forced them to move. However, the brick buildings, constructed as
improvements for the Mãe Maria IP, comprised the 'model' for houses
'good to live in' for the Funai agents over the following years, as
promised to the Gavião from the time when they had begun to be
transferred to the latter locality.
behind each house - whose internal spatial occupation does not exactly
correspond to the divisions constructed for a room, bedrooms, kitchen
and bathroom - there is a small shack made from wood or babassu leaves,
with only a small part closed by walls, which is very similar to the
traditional Timbira house. People spend a large part of the day there:
it is a place for cooking and resting, using the inside of the brick
house only for sleeping at night. In fact, many of the Gavião,
particularly the elders, became unhappy with the way the works were
conducted in the village and complained especially about the heat and
the noise in the new brick houses.
non-Indians who have joined the Gavião currently live beside the new
village, in a temporary settlement built from babassu palm, planks and
asbestos, where all the members of the group stayed for a year (1980),
waiting for the end of construction of the new village and while the
high tension towers were being built at the site of the old village.
Despite the accentuated demographic imbalance, the process of population recovery
allowed the Gavião to re-establish the operation of an age set system
that centres precisely on the more numerous male population. This system
divides into children, adolescents or 'bachelors,' adults 'married
without children' and adults 'married with children.' Each one of these
sets is associated with particular levels of participation and prestige.
little use of their native language in the daily life of the village,
the Gavião reverted to putting into practice the naming system and the
relations engendered through it, with the performance of the long term
ceremonial cycles, as one of the mechanisms involved in the
re-affirmation of the group's ethnic identity.
With the reforms occurring from 1976 onwards, an intense revival of the long term
ceremonial cycles took place, until then impeded by the agents of the
Post. The naming system thereby regained its importance as a functioning
classificatory system, since it is responsible for the recruitment of
the integrants of the basic ritual units into which the whole society
divides during the ceremonies.
It seems that
the mother's brother or father's sister, whether real or classificatory,
are the preferential transmitters of male and female names respectively.
However, due to the emptying of the ideal categories, it is nowadays
possible to observe re-configurations in the parents' choice of those
who will give names to their children, above all in response to the
expansion of a network of intragroup relations.
individual receives two names (or more) of which only one is used. For
both men and women, the transmission of names imposes responsibilities
on them to act as mentors for those who receive the names, guiding them
in the ceremonies, teaching them songs and log racing techniques, as
well as myths. Parents may transmit the names of their deceased close
kin to their own children. This amounts to a way of preserving the names
and the 'place' of the dead. Each person tends to call members of the
Community - except their closest consanguine relatives - by the same
kinship terms used for them by the individual who gave the person his or
her name, as well as adopting their formal friends. A child adopts all
the ceremonial affiliations of the person who gave him or her their
name. In other words, the name giver and receiver are socially identical.
friends relations are marked above all by avoidance, which also applies
between son/daughter-in-law and father/mother-in-law.
Revival of the
re-configuration instigated by the Gavião, returning to 'playing about'
- as they describe the rituals - meant recuperating institutions and rules essential to the operation of their system of social organization.
In 1976, the 'new maize festival' - realized from the end of January,
exactly at the start of the Brazil nut harvest - was marked with great
enthusiasm and euphoria by everyone, above all emphasizing the
re-configuration that had been set in motion.
are directly occupied with the relations between persons and groups
through the use of a symbolic schema: the division into moieties. The
entire group is segmented according to ceremonial moieties, Pàn (Macaw)
and Hàk (Hawk), who dispute the traditional log races and archery
contests. Another division into the Fish, Otter and Stingray sections
comes into play during the performance of another ceremonial cycle.
It is not just
the moieties and other sections that take part in the rituals: it is
also possible to note oppositions between kin and affines, between
formal friends, between men and women, or between different age sets.
Football matches, taking place frequently on the village's ceremonial
patio itself, are always divided between young and mature men.
last several months, with opening and closing periods. Linked to all the
rites, the log races started to be held with considerable frequency once
more: these are basically disputed between two or three groups,
corresponding to ceremonial sections. They are held almost daily, with
logs of babassu palm or silkcotton tree, painted with annatto dye
according to the phase of the ceremonial cycle. On arriving at the
patio, the racers are bathed by women, who in generally only take part
at the end. Numerous comments are made in a playful tone exalting the
performance of the racers throughout the whole day.
with the log races, the archery games gradually became more intense as a
practice accentuating competition in a public and ritualized mode,
reaffirming interpersonal alliances. On ceremonial occasions these games
consist of competitions held later in the day after the log racing, when
everyone sets off to a site in the forest close to the village.
Sometimes the game is held in front of the houses, but always in the
late afternoon. Pairs are formed in groups (members of different
ceremonial sections) that compete in arrow shooting on radiating paths.
Boys and women generally stay at the other end to collect the arrows and
return them to the participants.
of this game exist, following on from each other as the ceremonial cycle
unfolds and for which the Parkatêjê use different types of arrow. The
first involves shooting downwards, making the arrow hit the front of a
small bow stuck in the ground a metre away from the archer so that it
then rises and falls about three hundred metres further on. In the other
modality, the arrow is shot upwards and its flight extends even further.
After falling to the ground, the distance covered by the participants'
arrows each round determines the winner between the partners. Skilled
archers, usually mature women and men, are admired within Parkatêjê
society and their performance - along with the fastest and most skilled
log racers - is a source for acquiring prestige and a motive for long
discussions on the patio.c
In 1983, the
Gavião held an important ritual cycle linked to male initiation: the Pemp,
which had been unperformed for about 25 years, precisely the period of
time since definitive contact with the kupêon. Although this
ritual involves the initiation of young warriors, a high degree of
enthusiasm and motivation runs through the whole group, especially when
moments of role reversal occur, which foreground the performance of
women in the log races and archery games.
initiates remain in reclusion for some months in a small house walled
with babassu thatch and constructed in the rear part of the village
circle, behind the house of one of the ceremonial mentors. Here they
receive special training based on bravery and honour, guiding principles
in the perpetuation of a warrior ethos particular to the contemporary Gêo
groups. The initiates only leave this house to take part in collective
activities such as hunting and gathering or harvesting the swiddens.
Always together, the pemp bathe at an exclusive point of the Mãe
Maria creek. Elders claim "it is necessary to bathe a lot in order to
This serial about 6
countries will be to follow soon.
liberation front 2020
Season 2 -
Quarter 1 31th January
- June 16the. 2020
UN CLIMATE CONFERENCE MADRID COP25 incl. Australian forest fires and
Greta Thunberg Tribute
aaaaan March 8, 1908
in New York was the first strike by women instead. The strike was
directed against the poor working conditions in the textile industry and
has become famous among other poetically worded requirement of the women:
"bread and roses".
The strike was the beginning of the struggle for women's emancipation
and against inequality. In 1910, the German socialist Clara Zetkin
(1857-1933) at the International Vrouwenconfentie, a conference of
Socialist Women in Copenhagen the proposal to proclaim March 8 as
International Women's Day. However, this date was not held anywhere. In
the Netherlands the first Women's Day was celebrated on March 12, 1912
In 1917 broke
again on March 8 a strike because of poor working conditions in the
textile industry, now in St. Petersburg, Russia, headed by the
revolutionary Alexandra Kollontai. Partly as a result chose the
International Women's Secretariat of the Communist or Third
International in 1921, to March 8 final date of International Women's
Throughout the Cold War, this celebration in the countries of NATO in a
suspicious light stood by its originating socialist basis. In many
capitalist countries the day was therefore not widely celebrated or even
Women of all a,
faiths and political tendencies participate. In 1978, the International
Women's Day was recognized by the United Nations. In only a single
Western country prevails resistance to "the eighth of March
Since then 'till today every March 8th there is an
international womens day with growing succes as far as the number of
femist participation is concened but this year it is centerend around
violence against and feminicides.
But also thousantds of women went to the streets betecause in comparison
to men they get still get underpayed.
Russia: You're the 8th. miracle
Latest news: Weinstein
sentenced to 23 years for rape. Weinsteins lawyers say he got a
remarkbly light light sentence.
of abuse by Weinstein' denounce settlement in open letter'.
accusers of the convicted rapist
are calling on the
New York state attorney general
to renegotiate the terms of the
class-action against him, which they denounce as unfair and unjust.
The women sent
an open letter to James on Monday pleading with her to reconsider her
office's backing of the civil settlement, which they say is detrimental
to the interests of many Weinstein victims.
was reached in
December with the involvement of the attorney general and has been
fiercely disputed ever since.
intervention of the women comes two days before Weinstein is to be
sentenced in his criminal case. Last month the disgraced movie mogul was
the New York sup reme court of raping a woman whom the Guardian is not
naming as her wishes over identification are not known, and forcing oral
sex on a production assistant, Miriam Haley.
He after a
combined punishment of up to 29 years in prison but already got 23 for
sure. And on top of the ice cake he's got the corona.
Justice always prevails.
SCROLL UP FOR THE TOPICS OF SEASON 2 - 2020
SCROLL DOWN FOR THE TOPICS OF SEASON 1 - 2019
Season 1 Quarter 4 December 15th. 2020 - April 15th.
Feminicides in Ciudad
Mothers for peace,
Brazilian indigenous seeks EU support
IS and the attempted genocide of the
GLOBAL CLIMATE DEMONSTRATIONS REVOLT view a
depiction of the global demonstrations (approx. 40 pics.)
UN CLIMATE ACTION SUMMIT NYC 20-23 september part 1
UN CLIMATE ACTION SUMMIT NYC 20-23 september part 2
Quarter 3 September 15th. 2019 - December
She's back: amazon viking
and climate warrior Greta Thunberg (16)
Forough Farrokhzad feminist poetress
female amazon photographers
USA: The squad
Quarter 2 May 31th. - September 1t5h.
Urgent rescue call for Latifa Al Maktoum aka
princess/sheikha of Dubai
Urgent call for Nasrin
' Lipstick and Gas Masks ':
Women in times of resistance
London Climate Rebelion 1
London Climate Rebelion 2
Greta Thunberg, Sweden, climate rebel, activist
and amazon warrior says: "I'll be back!"
Special Climate Alert:
Greta Thunberg, Sweden,
climate rebel, activist and amazon warrior
Villaseñor, NYC, climate rebel, activist and amazon warrior
Global march 2019
Quarter 1 FEB- 31 MAY
Malala Yousafhai Pakistan -
- Peshmerga female
Sweden, climate rebel/activist.