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Nature, Crisis and Reform among the Sateré-Mawé

Foto: Wolfgang Kapfhammer
Dona Maria

In Western discourse indigenous societies of Brazil have come to be prototypical examples of commendable environmental relations safeguarding ecological sustainability and biodiversity. However, t his narrative neglects the historical fact that indigenous societies have to meet these expectations on the basis of largely impaired, if not downright destroyed structures.
The project explores relations between humans and nature among the Sateré-Mawé of the Brazilian Amazon in their historical conditions on the one side and against the background of a dialectic of indigenous sociability on the other. The project focuses on human-nature-relations within the context of an evangelical conversion movement. This movement attempts a radical transformation of society by recurring to universalistic alternatives within indigenous sociability, while human-nature-relations have taken a back seat due to the movement’s inherent transcendental tendencies. At the same time it introduces new moral standards for the construction of consensus, which contribute to the “cultural sustainability” of recently introduced economic projects in turn motivated by a Western interest in ecological sustainability.

Project Leaders: 2009-2011 Prof. Dr. Mark Münzel
2012-2013 Prof. Dr. Ernst Halbmayer/Prof. Dr. Mark Münzel
Scientific assistants: Dr. Wolfgang Kapfhammer
2009-2011 Korina Klasing
2012-2013 Friederike Georg
Students assistants: 2009-2011 Friederike Georg, Mona Mansour
Conception: 2009-2010 Dr. Wolfgang Kapfhammer und Prof. Dr. Mark Münzel
2012-2013 Dr. Wolfgang Kapfhammer, Prof. Dr. Ernst Halbmayer, Prof. Dr. Mark Münze
Duration: 2009-2011/ 2012-2013
Financing: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)