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Posted on 28/6/13

The “retomada”(it’s a word in Portuguese created by he indigenous people that means something near to “retake”) is the main instrument used by the Tupinambá in the fight for their territory. It’s the way the Indigenous found to press the government so the territory can finally be officially regularized. The state has refused to continue the demarcation process, wich has suffered many setbacks in recent years. The alternative found to this situation by the Tupinambá leaders was the self-demarcation:

If the government does not demarcate, we will do it ourselves.


The map to the Tupinambá territory drawn by the National Indian Foundation is used by the Indians for choosing the land to be occupied with the retomadas. The actions are held in properties located in the territory, according to this map. This geographical map generated by scientific knowledge and built by the state, in this case represented by the agency that deals with indigenous issues, is reappropriated by the fight trough the retomadas, taking on new meaning.The georeferenced map produced by the government only becomes really important when it is transformed into an instrument of struggle for those who live the territory. The retomada process is not limited to a physical territory, it is a dynamic creation, organization and determination of new directions for the Tupinambá life made by the indigenous themselves. The bureaucratic process of demarcation that must be done by the State has no value without the Tupinambá self-recognition of that territory.



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