The Cultural Kaleidoscope in the "Island of Guiana"

Author(s): Peter E. Siegel; Renzo Duin; Jimmy Mans

Year: 2017


The Guiana Shield is an island demarcated by the massive river systems of the Orinoco and Amazon and the northeast coastline of South America. Numerous Amerindian groups with distinct identities have occupied the region for thousands of years. In the contexts of maintaining distinct identities and active processes of ethnogenesis, well-established webs of relations and exchange exist across the region. Relations of production and distribution long documented ethnohistorically and ethnographically, are now mediated and (re-)negotiated through the lens or filter of the twenty-first century globalized world. In this paper, we address post-colonial experiences of three interacting Amerindian groups: Trio, Wayana, and Waiwai. People, things, and ideas move between the Trio, Wayana, and Waiwai through social networks with varying degrees of formality. Two overarching questions inform our study: Are legacies of colonial encounters resulting in forms of ethnogenesis that might better be called ethnocidal? Are village communities that are comprised of people from different ethnic groups an artifact of globalization or part of an indigenous design that social anthropologist Peter Rivière called a ‘cultural kaleidoscope’?

Cite this Record

The Cultural Kaleidoscope in the "Island of Guiana". Peter E. Siegel, Renzo Duin, Jimmy Mans. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 429072)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -93.691; min lat: -56.945 ; max long: -31.113; max lat: 18.48 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 12125