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Violent activist groups, such as the Coordinadora Arauco Malleco , use tactics such as burning of structures and pastures, and death threats against people and their families. Protesters from Mapuche communities have used these tactics against properties of both multinational forestry corporations and private individuals. At the time of the arrival of Europeans, the Mapuche organized and constructed a network of forts and complex defensive buildings. In the long year coexistence between the Spanish colonies and the relatively well-delineated autonomous Mapuche regions, the Mapuche also developed a strong tradition of trading with Spaniards, Argentines and Chileans.

Such trade lies at the heart of the Mapuche silver-working tradition, for Mapuche wrought their jewelry from the large and widely dispersed quantity of Spanish, Argentine and Chilean silver coins. Mapuche also made headdresses with coins , which were called trarilonko, etc. Mapuche languages are spoken in Chile and Argentina. The two living branches are Huilliche and Mapudungun. Although not genetically related, lexical influence has been discerned from Quechua. Linguists estimate that only about , full-fluency speakers remain in Chile.

The language receives only token support in the educational system. Mapuche speakers of Chilean Spanish who also speak Mapudungun tend to use more impersonal pronouns when speaking Spanish. They believe in worlds known as the Wenu Mapu and Minche Mapu. Also, Mapuche cosmology is informed by complex notions of spirits that coexist with humans and animals in the natural world, and daily circumstances can dictate spiritual practices. The most well-known Mapuche ritual ceremony is the Ngillatun, which loosely translates "to pray" or "general prayer".

These ceremonies are often major communal events that are of extreme spiritual and social importance. Many other ceremonies are practiced, and not all are for public or communal participation but are sometimes limited to family. Central to Mapuche belief is the role of the machi shaman.

It is usually filled by a woman, following an apprenticeship with an older machi, and has many of the characteristics typical of shamans. The machi performs ceremonies for curing diseases, warding off evil, influencing weather, harvests, social interactions and dreamwork. Machis often have extensive knowledge of regional medicinal herbs.

As biodiversity in the Chilean countryside has declined due to commercial agriculture and forestry, the dissemination of such knowledge has also declined, but the Mapuche people are reviving it in their communities. Machis have an extensive knowledge of sacred stones and the sacred animals. Like many cultures, the Mapuche have a deluge myth epeu of a major flood in which the world is destroyed and recreated.

The myth involves two opposing forces: Kai Kai water, which brings death through floods and Tren Tren dry earth, which brings sunshine. In the deluge almost all humanity is drowned; the few not drowned survive through cannibalism. At last only one couple is left.


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A machi tells them that they must give their only child to the waters, which they do, and this restores order to the world. Part of Mapuche ritual is prayer and animal sacrifice, required to maintain the cosmic balance. This belief has continued to current times. In , for example, a machi sacrificed a young boy, throwing him into the water after an earthquake and a tsunami.

The Mapuche have incorporated the remembered history of their long independence and resistance from Spanish and then Chileans and Argentines , and of the treaty with the Chilean and Argentine government in the s. Memories, stories, and beliefs, often very local and particularized, are a significant part of the Mapuche traditional culture.

Mapuche conflict

To varying degrees, this history of resistance continues to this day amongst the Mapuche. At the same time, a large majority of Mapuche in Chile identify with the state as Chilean, similar to a large majority in Argentina identifying as Argentines. We Tripantu is the Mapuche New Year celebration. One of the best-known arts of the Mapuche is their textiles.

The Mapuche women were responsible for spinning and weaving.

Mapuche - Wikipedia

Knowledge of both weaving techniques and textile patterns particular to the locality were usually transmitted within the family, with mothers, grandmothers, and aunts teaching a girl the skills they had learned from their own elders. Women who excelled in the textile arts were highly honored for their accomplishments and contributed economically and culturally to their kinship group. A measure of the importance of weaving is evident in the expectation that a man give a larger dowry for a bride who was an accomplished weaver. In addition, the Mapuche used their textiles as an important surplus and an exchange trading good.

Numerous sixteenth-century accounts describe their bartering the textiles with other indigenous peoples, and with colonists in newly developed settlements. Such trading enabled the Mapuche to obtain those goods that they did not produce or held in high esteem, such as horses. At present, the fabrics woven by the Mapuche continue to be used for domestic purposes, as well as for gift, sale or barter.

Most Mapuche women and their families now wear garments with foreign designs and tailored with materials of industrial origin, but they continue to weave ponchos, blankets, bands and belts for regular use. Many of the fabrics are woven for trade, and in many cases, are an important source of income for families.

This form of learning is based on gestural imitation, and only rarely, and when strictly necessary, the apprentice receives explicit instructions or help from their instructors.

Knowledge is transmitted as fabric is woven, the weaving and transmission of knowledge go together. Clava is a traditional stone hand-club used by the Mapuche. It has a long flat body. Its full name is clava mere okewa ; in Spanish, it's known as clava cefalomorfa. It has some ritual importance as a special sign of distinction carried by tribal chiefs. Many kinds of clavas are known. This is an object associated with masculine power. It consists of a disk with attached handle; the edge of the disc usually has a semicircular recess. In many cases, the face portrayed on the disc carries incised designs.

The handle is cylindrical, generally with a larger diameter at its connection to the disk. In the later half of the eighteenth century Mapuche silversmithing began to produce large amounts of silver finery.


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  • The great diversity in silver finery designs is due to the fact that designs were made to be identified with different reynma families , lof mapu lands as well as specific lonkos and machis. In the late eighteenth century and early nineteenth century Mapuche silversmithing activity and artistic diversity reached it climax.

    The Mapuche culture of the sixteenth century had an oral tradition and lacked a writing system. Since that time, a writing system for Mapudungun was developed, and Mapuche writings in both Spanish and Mapudungun have flourished. The ritual transvestism of male machi Following the independence of Chile in the s, the Mapuche began to be perceived as Chilean by other Chileans, contrasting with previous perceptions of them as a separate people or nation.

    Yes, Chile is the name of the country over where its flag waves and its laws are obeyed. There are various recorded instances in the nineteenth century when Mapuches were the subject of civilizing mission discourses by elements of Chilean government and military. This event, so important to our social and political life, and so significant for the future of the republic, has ended, happily and with costly and painful sacrifices. Contemporary attitudes towards Mapuches on the part of non-indigenous people in Chile are highly individual and heterogeneous.

    Nevertheless, a considerable part of the non-indigenous people in Chile have a prejudiced and discriminatory attitude towards Mapuche. The Coordinadora Arauco-Malleco claims to have the goal of a "national liberation" of Mapuche, with their regaining sovereignty over their own lands. The Mapuche people are honored in the scientific name of a species of South American lizard, Liolaemus mapuche. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Ethnic group in South America. Main article: Mapuche history. See also: Incas in Central Chile. Main article: Arauco War. She also earned powerful foes.

    All her prior controversies were dwarfed by the terrorism charge. The prosecution alleged that these protesters fired at the Luchsinger-Mackay home before setting it on fire, an act of terrorism resulting in murder. The legal saga stretched over more than five years, with ups and downs and reversals along the way sparking public protests. When Linconao finally was released from jail on house arrest in early , she weighed only 88 pounds.

    A spokeswoman said Linconao could not be interviewed for this story because of her weak health. As a formerly imprisoned member of a repressed minority who used a hunger strike as a weapon, Linconao has a few things in common with Nelson Mandela, the South African legend who would have turned this month.

    Cultural practices

    The Internal Security of the State Law was put on the books under Pinochet and was used to prosecute enemies of his regime. Suspects can face indefinite detention without charge, wiretapping and extended prison time. For her supporters, her struggle has blended with their own. For her detractors, her victories are affronts on justice. Today, with the prison sentence through the anti-terrorism law of 3 of the accused, justice was taken a great step forward, and impunity suffered a strong defeat. I renew my promise of 0 tolerance for terrorism. Love her or hate her, Linconao has set her country aflame.

    While her success remains uncertain, her supporters might take comfort in the fact that the Mapuche people were never conquered by the Spanish. This year, OZY is going Around the World, bringing you untold stories from every single country on the map, one day at a time, to introduce you to new people, new trends and new places. How does a shy lawyer in the midst of a midlife love affair decide to have sex in front of strangers? Now employees are turning the tables. The tale of Trump, Ukraine and the Biden family is another unfolding election intrigue, but with better documentation.

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