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Multispecies ethnography of the Marajoara Amazon

Grant number: 21/04496-7
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2022
Effective date (End): May 31, 2026
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Anthropology
Principal Investigator:Felipe Ferreira Vander Velden
Grantee:Matheus Henrique Pereira da Silva
Host Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


The present study addresses livestock on the island of Marajó, in particular the systematic breeding of buffaloes, oxen and horses and their various relationships with breeders, ranchers, technicians and cowboys on farms in two historic cities and their surroundings, Cachoeira do Arari and Soure. These animals permeate the way of life of the Marajoaras from their symbolic and technical universe, to practices such as cooking, as they provide meat, milk, leather and horns for artisans, tanners, cheese makers, restaurants and other types of establishments, and it can be said that the Marajoara society lives due to the dealings with cattle. From a multispecific ethnographic perspective, the objective of this research is to understand: what do farms and their relations with farm animals say about Marajoara history and culture? How do the forms of adoption, creation and diffusion of these animals configure ways of life in the rural environment? What role does the daily work of cowboys and buffalo play in the constitution of Marajoara culture and livestock? The hypothesis is that these animals are imbued with positive values within the Marajoara cultural, socioecological and cosmological system, not only because they are "good to think", "good to eat" or "good to ban", but because "they are good for produce "- be it milk, meat, transport, traction, culture / tradition or some combination of these - and good for" living together ", based on their relationships in the ways of creation. This research focuses, therefore, on the study of dealing with animals on farms as a material-semiotic expression typical of the culture of Marajoara livestock, in order to seek to understand the multispecies landscapes on the island. (AU)

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