Vanishing Cultures of the Amazon Rainforest

Indigenous Amazonian cultures and the unique languages that define them are disappearing at a rapid rate. The goal of this assignment is to make a photo database of individuals from the various indigenous people of the Amazon Rainforest.

The Amazon Rainforest not only has the world's greatest biological diversity, but human diversity as well. In the Amazon River Basin of South America, there are an estimated 34 different language families spoken by perhaps as many as 500 tribes. In comparison, all of Europe, Africa, and Asia combined have just 21 language families.

Unfortunately, these languages (and the cultures that they define) are vanishing at a rapid rate. It is estimated that half of these indigenous Amazonian languages will not longer be spoken within one generation.

Rather than trying to document all the disappearing languages from the entire world, the goal of this photo assignment will be more realistic and will make a photographic database of the various indigenous people of the Amazon Rainforest. Specifically, this assignment will focus on the following tribes and language families (in parentheses):

- Kamayura (Tupi-Guarani language family)
- Kayapo (Macro-Ge)
- Yawalapiti (Arawakan)
- Yanomami (Yanomam)
- Secoya (Tucanoan)
- Korubo (Panoan)
- Achuar (Jivaroan)
- Bora (Witotan)
- Ticuna (language isolate)
- Huaorani (language isolate)
- Urarina (language isolate)

The goal is twofold: To make a photo database of cultures in danger of disappearing forever, thereby showing the world how beautiful and interesting these cultures are and how important it is to help preserve them.

One important point that should be made is that indigenous Amazonian cultures are not inferior cultures doomed to extinction; rather they are adaptable and given a chance they can adapt and survive in a changing world.

This photo assignment will help raise awareness about indigenous Amazonians and will be an important step in preserving these indigenous cultures and the languages that they speak.

Rank: 144



Now this is an adventure! I've been watching Mark & Ollie visiting a tribe in Peru and I don't think I could handle the bugs and dangers! You go for it - a great idea! You have my vote, may I have yours? Thanks!


Very interesting! You got my vote...check out my idea and vote for me too :)


I really like your idea! Good luck! If you get a chance, visit my idea and pic it if you like it :) http://www.nameyourdreamassignment.com/the-ideas/srebeccan/children-of-redemption/


Good luck. I voted for this. Please consider my ideas as well. Pass around the good Karma.


Well researched, and a much needed record. Excellent idea! I gave you my vote! Please check out my assignment idea too and vote for me back. My dream is to explore the cultural diversity that makes America a melting pot of heritage. Thank you! Jenn


Some great ideas are getting lost in the wave of network votes so if you like my idea please vote for me, and I will in turn vote for all the ideas by inspirational photographers .
thanks for any votes/comments... Jkava888


I have left my vote.. thank you for visiting mine...


Very cool. Please, check me out too when you've got the time.


Very cool. Please, check me out too when you've got the time.


Great idea! Thanks for voting for me as well! :)


All the best.


I agree with your post you left me. All but 1 of my votes was from my effort to get people to vote for me. I do find it somewhat underhanded at the tactics these people have stooped to. I can't believe a former preacher went from the low 40's to the 6th place by using these tactics.


I hope you are as passionate about your idea as I am of mine. I will pursue my idea after the contest if I don't make it. I did vote for you because your idea is just as important as mine if not more important.. And I swear to you, I am not interested in your vote in return. Good Luck!!


you are absolutely correct and I agree, you have my vote too, thanks for the support :)


I agree Dan - there are a lot of good ideas there are not getting proper exposure (like yours) and many that not as well thought out that are getting a lot of votes. I put a vote in for you.


I agree with you all. I started within hrs of the Insulin project and am battling being buried like all of you, tried the method of voting for others,t NO avail after 30+ attempts. I haven't had votes in days til yours Dan. Thank you! I voted!


thanks for the comment... must agree! i'v been working really hard to get my idea out to the public...while others are scheming votes:(


I voted-this sounds great! Please help my dream get some votes too!!!! Thanks!


I'm not sure now. I still love your idea because native peoples all over the world need a main stream voice But.Are you doing the same as father john?


Thanks for the support. You have my vote as well. I am advocating for similar preservation of the southeastern US Coastal Island African Cultures aka "Gullah" or "Geechie".


Your idea is one of the best I've seen. (Obviously I would like it as I am interested in very similar issues.) I agree that an online popularity contest is not the best way to choose a worthy project! Voted 4 ya.


I agree, I really hope someone looks into this "I voted for you, you vote for me" scams. I can only think that the contest judges would research the top 20's votes a little before they decide if they won the votes validly.


Agreed as well with this popularity contest.


That's a good idea, but one Hell of a challenge. Ever been there before?


I agree. how can we help each other?


I agree you have my vote.


Finally, an idea with actual content and organization! Dan, you are right, trying to mine actual great ideas out of the masses is difficult at best. You have my wholehearted support! Best of luck!


Yes, this voting business does seem like a popularity contest, but if you carefully read the rules and regs, you will see that participants need not be in the top 20 necessarily to be judged. It seems to be another means by which Lenovo gets people exposed to the Thinkpad.


You have my vote too! Thanks for picking Peasant Farming - Perserving a way of life, our health and community, and food security. Let's get in the top 100!


I completely agree about us Sub-100's! And your idea, too, is a great one!


Agreed.. voted for you :)


I love this idea! check out mine and Pic it if youd like! Congo here I come...


I agree good idea!


I agree with all of you. I was afraid to enter this contest for the very reason that I HATE popularity contest and knew I would never win. But, I feel strongly about my idea and helping out the people in Aus. after the bush fires. Let's work together and help each other!!


We absolutly should.Thank you,You have a great idea as well!


This is more than a great idea. I wish that the realization of your dream would not depend on a popularity contest. Good luck!


i pic'd you!


thanks, like it,certainly some good ideas getting lost in the mix amongst all this computer network votes..and if you like mine,about orhpans in USA and Africa, please return the vote!


Awesome Idea! I pic'd yours, now come visit mine! Though, I highy doubt that anyone can touch the #1... :(


I like your idea, and you're not yet in the 100!!!
what a shame, i vote for you.
have a look at mine
good luck


This is cultural alarming, thanks for the pic, and hope we all end up at least in top 100


I like your idea too! This voting thing is so difficult. I hope we can make it to the top 100:)


I love this idea! There is so many cultures and tribes that thrive on the rain forest. Watch out for the snakes, if you win. Got my vote.
Please check out my idea and return the vote if you like.


good luck.


I agree with you, lets all work it out! :) Picd you.


I agree with your comment about the network. I think you have a great idea and I'd like to see you in the top 20. I am giving you a vote and I'm sending people to your idea to vote. Best of luck!


This sounds truly amazing! I can't wait to see your photos - Wonderful idea & great dream! Best of luck and you have my "PIC" - please check out my dream of furthering peaceful coexistence between Jews and Arabs in the Middle East. Thanks!!


you've very right, you're a lot closer than me! I had the chance to go to the Amazon a few years back but it fell through. I would love to see your photos!
A fellow sub-100-er


Saw the comment you left me, and I appreciate the support. I firmly believe in the power of my idea (for the renewal of women whose lives have been shattered by abuse http://tinyurl.com/apfjdw) to change the world. I'll happily support and help advertise for you in return for your readers' support.


I'm totally down for supporting your comment. We should see more of our type of ideas in the top 100. I wish you evenly good luck! May we proceed to further judgment. Thanks for your support!


hi there...yes i wanted to do smthg along these lines years ago..,but it wasnt safe to visit..now its okay..I did aload of research on it...also check out mine!Orphanage America


Cool idea!


Great idea and I appreciate the fact that you realize that indigenous cultures are not inferior. Many of the top 100 seem to fail to grasp this important reality.
Thanks for the pic, you are right, we need to promote the great ideas that have yet to make the top 100.


I love this idea. Thanks for the pic. We do need to promote each other better. I will be working on that this week. I think that it is important to recognize the cultures before they disappear completely.


I voted for you. You're right. It's sad that so many great ideas like yours are buried under the first 100. I wish the contest could feature recycle the ideas to an 'explore' page. Best of luck!


Good Luck, I voted for you!


I was excited about this at first but when i realized you need votes to win I knew this is going no where for me. I have however voted for your project. Wish you all the best.


you may want to add me on flickr my username is ronangara


i spent a few weeks in the rain forest in peru and a memory I cherish. I pic'd your dream. visit my dream and pic it/comment if you like it. thanks.


Oh, I wish you luck for the win! What a trek this would be...I volunteer to carry your gear if you win! (wink!)


Thanks for your vote for my idea! I agree with you - it's very hard to find the ideas that are outside of the top 100. I really like your story idea, and just gave you a vote!


you got my vote...check out mine....you are so rite I'M off to vote for more sub-100's great idea...


I like your idea, too! You've got my vote--Cindy


Thanks for the vote and yes, we sub-top 100ers need to stick together! I worked a number of years in the Amazon, most closely with the Huaorani people. Love your idea - very much needed!


I'm glad you are doing this. Good luck to you...you have a clear outline and it is a worthy cause. Please do it even if you do not win! Very important project, indeed. Thanks, Kristen (if you'd like to vote for me, I just entered today!)


You got my vote..


I would love to do a project on the Amazon. I'm voting for you -- please return the favor when you have time and vote for my project on land seizures, political upheaval and daily struggles in Zimbabwe.


Thank you for your vote and comment as I commpletly agree with you. You also have a wonderful idea that is getting over looked which I voted for. I personally do not have the time to promote as others have, and I would love to see your idea also come to life. Good luck and hang in there!


You've got my vote... it is so important to document these cultures nearing extinction.. . that is what my idea aims to do as well (with Tibet). Check it out when you get a chance!


way better than insulin. good luck & check out my dream!


I have to agree with this online voting contest. THere are so many ideas out there that are better than ones in the top 20, but just aren't getting the proper exposure. I really hope we can increase our votes within the next week! :)


Hope you get more! Check out mine... hope you like it.


thanks so much for the sub 100 vote!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i am very supportive of your ideas

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