This paper examines some of the links between ecology, culture, human rights, and historical memory in Upper Amazonia. It argues that Amazonian peoples prior to the arrival of Old World peoples influenced the local environment through a process of monumentalism by cultural selection and that the Amazon forest (despite deforestation) remains one of the most important archives of the region’s ecological and cultural history. The article goes on to argue the ecological destruction taking place violates Amazonian people’s human rights that must end. Finally, the work makes the case that the Jesuit Missions of Maynas remain important and understudied sites, which represent initial phases of some of the threats of ecocide and ethnocide that face Amazonia today.
|Keywords:||Amazon, Ecology, Maynas, Human Rights, Jesuits, Cultural Selection|
Ph.D Student, Department of History, The University of California San Diego, San Diego, California, USA
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