Following seeds: circuits and paths of sateré-mawé women between city and village
Ana Luisa Sertã (University of Sao Paulo)
Paper short abstract:
This paper addresses the creative experiences of Sateré-Mawé women in Manaus (Brazil) and the relationships they established between the city and the Andirá-Marau indigenous land through a network of seeds, which are collected, exchanged and used in the making of bracelets and necklaces.
Paper long abstract:
The presence of the Sateré-Mawé people in Manaus (Brazil) is made particularly evident by the "urban villages" and associations that emerged in the city during the 1990s, through political movements mainly led by young women who came from the Andirá-Marau indigenous land. Gradually, handicrafts made with seeds became one of the main life strategies of the Sateré-Mawé women in the urban area, as opposed to the housework in so-called "family homes". In the processes of making seed artefacts, the city itself becomes not only a place of multiple encounters and experiences but also an area of collection of certain seeds, which are combined with those brought from the indigenous land in the production of necklaces and bracelets. To follow the paths of the seeds reveals a wide circuit and a particular way of experiencing the city, which also mobilizes multilocal relations in different municipalities and countries. The practice of craftwork, and all that it implies — from the collection, exchange and purchase of seeds to the making and selling of the artefacts— triggers a broad circulation that is intrinsically linked to the agency of women and the spaces established by them in the city, where the practice of craftwork emerges in a context of transformation of gender roles, ways of doing and frontiers between city and indigenous land.
Youth and indigeneity on the move: mobilities, transcultural knowledge, and sustainability