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Politics and "culture" in upper Rio Negro: the case of Iauaretê

Grant number: 11/16760-9
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2012
Effective date (End): March 31, 2013
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Anthropology - Indigenous Ethnology
Principal Investigator:Geraldo Luciano Andrello
Grantee:Tatiana Amaral Sanches Ferreira
Home Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


This project's goal is to realize an ethnographic research about recent initiatives of "cultural revitalization" in the region of upper rio Negro, particularly those which have been developed by tukanoans groups of Uaupés. Therefore, this study will be made combining brief field work experience and literature review. The case to be privileged here is the repatriation (occurred between 2008 and 2009) of a set of ceremonial ornaments previously kept at the Museu do Índio de Manaus, over decades. Facing the impossibility to define the ornaments' original communities was established that the repatriated ornaments would constitute collective propriety of Uaupés' indigenous people. Taking in consideration that this is an unique case in Brazil, the project's objectives are to list and observe the use of ornaments since their repatriation process. Once ritual ornaments composed in the past, as showed Stephen Hugh-Jones, the material and visible part of local groups' wealth, a central issue is raised: to what extent the role of "trustee" assumed by a local indigenous organization can be carried out? (AU)