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The Culture Hack Curriculum

Example POV 2: Political manifesto

The Manifesto of Pirarucu

In January 2020, more than 600 indigenous leaders from 45 indigenous tribes as well as many other organizations and allies from across Brazil gathered at the Mebengokre People and Indigenous Leaders Gathering. They came at the invitation of Chief Raoni. The group was brought together by a shared context: increasing threats from the Brazilian government, rapidly increasing deforestation, a rise in illegal mining, and the weekly murders of Indigenous leaders, The four-day meeting was a time for those attending to join forces and denounce the genocide, ethnocide  and ecocide promoted by current goverment policies. It ended with a joint declaration, the Manifesto of Piracu.

The conversation centered around Indigenous voices. Everyone highlighted the historical nature of such gatherings, the importance of coming together to share stories, songs and solidarity; and the urgency of organizing in the face of the escalating violence from the government and from illegal land grabbers. Old and young voices, female and male in unison shared powerful stories of the challenges they face and of resistance.

The context was shaped by the voices of  women, who fought hard to make their voices heard in a space that has been historically dominated by men. Young and old women energized the conversation with an ‘embodied’ narrative of the struggle and contemporary Indigenous life, where men have often been the ones ‘selling out’ and succumbing to the temptations of capitalism; the opportunity to lease or rent the land to soya farmers or garimpeiros (artisan gold miners), or to loggers. Women offered a fresh perspective and at the same time set the foundational terms for the resistance — allegiance to the land, culture and principles.