Geography Reference
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interests of the agricultural industry. What the narrative and drawings also indicate
is how the language of human rights has entered the discourse of Xavante children
and young adults in central Brazil today. Two Xavante Ritei'wa (initiated young
men), Tseredzaró Ruri'õ and Were'é Marciano, took a leading role in explaining to
us details of Joaquim's execution, while the children, aged 5 to 18, elaborated the
Reliable information on the violation of Indigenous Peoples' rights in Brazil is
scarce, especially coming from children. This is what I found out working with
Guarani youth in the state of São Paulo, southern Brazil, as discussed in Chapter
3 and 4 of this topic. While in theory Brazilian Indigenous Peoples enjoy a wide
array of institutional protection from human rights abuses, in reality there is a
disturbing pattern of organized violence against them. 12 Youth are rarely given
the opportunity to speak out because they are considered immature by most
social scientists and politicians. Violence against Brazilian Indigenous Peoples
is compounded by delays in the federal process of legalization of Indigenous
territories, or “demarcation,” which is fiercely opposed by landowners. As shown
throughout this topic, Indigenous youth usually have a keen perception about,
and often creative solutions toward, protecting human rights violations in their
everyday lives. In this chapter, human rights issues uncovered in the youth's
narrative and in their drawings include the rights to life, liberty and security of
person, as well as the rights to lands, territories, and resources traditionally owned,
occupied, or otherwise used or acquired by the Xavante people. The 2007 United
Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UN DRIP) makes these
rights very clear. Violence and the struggle for environmental justice is the main
topic of the drawings and the narrative presented below.
Figure 6.9. Xavante young men lining up for a Buriti log race at the Idzô'uhu Village, 2002.
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