Indigenous Struggle at the Heart of Brazil: State Policy, Frontier Expansion, and the Xavante Indians, 1937-1988. (Reviews).
Indigenous Struggle at the Heart of Brazil: State Policy, Frontier Expansion, and the Xavante Indians, 1937-1988. By Seth Garfield. (Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2001. 328pp. $59.95/cloth $19.95/paper).
In the early 1970s, Brazilian political exiles and other opponents of the military dictatorship A military dictatorship is a form of government wherein the political power resides with the military; it is similar but not identical to a , a state ruled directly by the military. that ruled Brazil from 1964 to 1985 appealed to world public opinion in their criticism of the government's construction of the Transamazonian highway. Oppositionists alleged that the road construction seriously threatened the indigenous populations scattered throughout the Amazon River Amazon River
Portuguese Rio Amazonas
River, northern South America. It is the largest river in the world in volume and area of drainage basin; only the Nile River of eastern and northeastern Africa exceeds it in length. basin. A decade later international environmental activists in conjunction with Brazilian ecologists and anthropologists coupled the defense of Brazil's indigenous people with dire predictions about the imminent destruction of the Amazonian rainforest and the resultant diminishing of the world's supply of oxygen. In both cases, the indigenous populations were the subjects of intense debates, yet to the casual outside observer they seemed to remain on the sidelines On the sidelines
An investor who decides not to invest due to market uncertainty.
on the sidelines
Of or relating to investors who, having assessed the market, have decided to avoid committing their funds. of the political disputes that pitted Brazilian government policies against their Critics.
In this masterful study of the Xavante Indians of Central Brazil, historian Seth Garfield uncovers the agency of Brazilian indigenous groups in the life-and-death disputes over land, resources, notions of nationhood, and the fate of the ancestors of Brazil's first human inhabitants
The game is based loosely on the concepts from SameGame. . Indigenous Struggle is much more than a social and cultural history of the Xanante. Garfield deftly draws theoretical and analytical approaches from his thorough readings in anthropology, cultural studies, and post-colonial studies to create a carefully crafted, eloquently written, and subtly argued examination of the tensions among multiple forces: "Indians" and "Brazilians," the state and its agencies, missionaries and anthropologists, and landowners, small farmers, and landless land·less
Owning or having no land.
Adj. 1. peasants. This work will certainly become a yardstick to measure future studies of indigenous struggles in Brazil and beyond.
Getulio Vargas's authoritarian Estado Novo There have been two regimes known as Estado Novo (meaning "New State"):
Process of converting to a socioeconomic order in which industry is dominant. The changes that took place in Britain during the Industrial Revolution of the late 18th and 19th century led the way for the early industrializing nations of western Europe and of Brazil and the national integration of outlying regions far from the coastal concentration of the country's population, Vargas's regime utilized nineteenth century (and earlier) romantic notions of the childlike and innocent "noble savages" to promote a configuration of the nation that exalted its indigenous roots while at the same time enacting a policy to contact and "pacify pac·i·fy
tr.v. pac·i·fied, pac·i·fy·ing, pac·i·fies
1. To ease the anger or agitation of.
2. To end war, fighting, or violence in; establish peace in. " intractable native sons and daughters. Nationalist development projects meant harnessing people and resources. Although new state initiatives encouraged settlements in the frontier regions as a means of bringing indigenous people into the national fold, conflicting interests of missionaries and homesteaders and the fierce resistance of the Xavante, destabilized these plans. In the process, those favoring the integration of the indigeno us population into the modernizing nation clashed with those defending the isolation and protection of recently contacted indigenous groups. State planners imposed policies that ignored (or misunderstood) indigenous cultural, social, and economic patterns. Fixed settlements and paternal governmental assistance transformed the indigenous people's lives, as state resources ended up serving indigenous internal factional disputes rather than providing assistance for survival on the new terms established by the state. Here as throughout this study, Garfield carefully demonstrates how indigenous leaders were not passive recipients of government policies, programs, and material assistance, but appropriated and reshaped resources for their own cultural, social, and economic interests.
One who advocates preservation, especially of natural areas, historical sites, or endangered species.
pres policies to mark territories reserved for the Xavante (and other indigenous groups throughout Brazil) provoked stiff opposition from local elites who lusted after land for agricultural and cattle production. In the end, the government offered uneven and inadequate defense of the indigenous people, especially in post-World War II Brazil. During this period of increased subjugation Subjugation
king to whom God sold Israelites. [O.T.: Judges 3:8]
consigned to servitude in retribution for trickery. [O.T.: Joshua 9:22–27]
curses him and progeny to servitude. [O. and disruption, indigenous leaders began to master both the symbolic Brazilian codes regarding the indigenous populations and the economic and political system that was decimating its population. As intense capitalist accumulation promoted by the military dictatorship, especially in the late 1960s and 1970s, encouraged foreign capital investment and export-driven agrobusiness, "national security" considerations added to the pressure to shrink lands reserved for the Xavante and other indigenous populations. In response Xavante leaders appealed to international public opinion, learned to lobby government officials, util ized the media to their advantage (at times even employing popularized images of "fierce savages"), leveraged resources, gained allies, and even blocked land encroachment.
Ultimately, top-down state-sponsored development projects designed to establish self-sufficiency and undercut political militancy have created a complex interlocking interlocking /in·ter·lock·ing/ (-lok´ing) closely joined, as by hooks or dovetails; locking into one another.
interlocking Obstetrics A rare complication of vaginal delivery of twins; the 1st web of patronage, paternalism paternalism (p·terˑ·n , dependency, and corruption. Nevertheless, the Xavante have redefined state policy to the indigenous people, winning some victories during the process of redemocratization in the 1980s. They remain active agents in the defining their position within the Brazilian nation. In Indigenous Struggle at the Heart of Brazil, Garfield's Xavante protagonists are neither pathetic victims or unreconstructed un·re·con·struct·ed
1. Not reconciled to social, political, or economic change; maintaining outdated attitudes, beliefs, and practices.
2. Not reconciled to the outcome of the American Civil War.
Adj. 1. heroes. The position that they have carved out for themselves in modern Brazil remains tenuous at best. Yet Garfield's finely variegated variegated adjective Multifaceted; with many colors, aspects, features, etc analysis unearths the layered complexities of the multiple dramas of resistance and survival, accommodations and adaptation, within a process of transformation in which the indigenous population also tenaciously clings to valued elements of reconstructed tradition.