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Mughal, Muhammad Aurang Zeb (2013) 'Brazil.', in Native peoples of the world : an encyclopedia of groups, cultures, and contemporary issues. New York: Routledge, pp. 579-581.


Before the Portuguese arrival in present-day Brazil in 1500, more than 2,000 distinct ethnic groups resided in the region, with a total population of 2 million to 5 million. According to the official census of Brazil in 2006, the country is home to approximately 519,000 native people speaking more than 180 different languages, in addition to millions of Brazilians with mixed native and European ancestry. Over several centuries, most of Brazil’s native people either were killed by the Portuguese as a result of wars of conquest or slave labor, or they died of the diseases that Portuguese brought with them from Europe. Many native Brazilians eventually were assimilated into the settler population. Today, a majority of Brazil’s native people either live in their own home areas, usually in rural parts of the country, or in urban areas, while others remain isolated, having no contact with mainstream society. A number of Brazilian tribes also reside in neighboring countries, including the Baniwa (Venezuela), Chamacoco (Paraguay), Guaraní (Argentina, Bolivia, Parahuay, and Uruguay), and Ticuna (Colombia, Guyana, and Peru).

Item Type:Book chapter
Keywords:Native peoples, Brazil, Latin American studies, Race and ethnicity, Amazonian ethnology, Human rights.
Full text:Full text not available from this repository.
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Record Created:23 Jul 2013 13:20
Last Modified:02 Jul 2018 09:48

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