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Showing posts from August, 2020

Extracting from Pachamama's womb

Leyla Noriega has been active for more than 20 years, campaigning and reporting on injustices against indigenous people and the natural environment across the northern regions of Chile. The newly independent state had conquered the area around 1880 to access mines and natural resources that had previously been under the rule of Peru and Bolivia, and before then, by Incas and Aymaras who called the area Qullasuyu. One day the mining companies which Leyla had seen tear towns apart before in the area arrived at her mother and grandparents' town of Belén, at around 133 km from the city of Arica and at an altitude of 2800m and it was a very different feeling.  Mining laws in Chile were created specifically to easily sell land and water to private companies, during the Pinochet dictatorship, so that any private company that finds an element in the mountain can claim it for their own, and exploratory machinery can be installed up to a total of 39 machines without requiring any specific p

Decolonising the andean third gender

When getting into indigenous cultures one of the main fear is this underlying idea that they are going to be soon revealed to be backward or somehow savage, and you won't figure it out until you are tied up being slowly roasted with no white tarzan there to save you. Same goes for Aymara culture, often criticised by feminists who for example see the Chacha Warmi concept as reducing the genders to just male and female, and it's then used as the foundation of an idealised perfect community life made of people who bring out opposing complementary aspects and roles which work together to build a society.  Sexist and patriarchal attitudes are evident in indigenous circles, but also present in the countries that now exist across where andean cultures evolved before the conquest. This is perpetuated by the strong syncretic belief in Christianity and by national laws that generally favour men over women or LGBT rights .  But it's important to decolonise the binary gender which wa

La Mitma Migrante

...Consideraciones en búsqueda de un punto de contacto y coordinación entre la gente del pueblo Aymara y entre pueblos originarios... El Ayllu Virtual Desde las protestas de George Floyd he podido experimentar un acercamiento a mis raíces Aymara, quizá dada la ola de información que se ha visto llegar desde toda la gente está divulgando la información que ahora se hace más presente entre las protestas de BLM, la destrucción de monumentos coloniales y su legado ya es algo que concierne el mundo occidental. También con mi familia extensa de la parte de mi padre y abuela Aymara, culpa de la cuarentena hemos comenzado a reunirnos y poder compartir cuentos, canciones, saludos, chistes y un poco de todo, y al crecer el conocimiento de la plataforma zoom, hemos podido presentar de manera más ordenada lo que sabemos de la cultura Aymara. Al pasar los meses, las conversaciones se han ido convirtiendo muchas veces en una especie de clase intensiva de historia y cultura propiamente Aymara de nues

Aymara Hip Hop

 A quick collection of links about Aymara hip hop, which was mainly active during the life of Abraham Bohorquez who is considered one of the founders of this type of music. During the time of Evo Morales´s government it then seemed to fade a bit as maybe it´s major impetus was the time leading up to the massive mobilisations which brought Evo´s party MAS to power, but there are various writings about it. Known as Wayna Rap or Nacion Rap, it does manage to fuse a lot of sounds I love but Abraham´s girlfriend Nina Uma does mention it was certainly not a feminist movement for the most part, and it was not linked via a big industry so it could spread to other countries or continents, so remained limited to the El Alto area. Fortunately there are also female artists like Uma herself and Sdenka S