Munduruku anthropologist and archaeologist defend their undergraduate dissertations at UFOPA (2-5-20)

Munkuruku anthropologist and archaeologist

First Munduruku anthropologist and archaeologist defend their undergraduate dissertations at the Universidade Federal do Oeste do Pará

In late November and early December, Jair Boro Munduruku and Eliano Kirixi Munduruku defended their undergraduate dissertations, respectively in archaeology and   anthropology, within the Universidade Federal do Oeste do Pará’s (UFOPA) Anthropology and Archaeology Programme (PAA).

It was the first time that UFOPA was able to have a non-academic indigenous intellectual – in this case, the Munduruku historian Jairo Saw Munduruku – on the panel of archaeology and anthropology student dissertations. This was fundamental for them to be assessed not only based on Western academic standards but also according to Munduruku traditional knowledge, which was essential for them to become respectively a Munduruku archaeologist and Munduruku anthropologist. This was made possible thanks to funds made available by SALSA, which covered professor Jairo’s hefty travel expenses from his Sawre Aboy Aldeia on the Jamanxim River, in the middle Tapajós River region, to Santarém.

Jair Boro’s dissertation is entitled “Caminhos para o passado: Oca’õ, Agukabûk e Cultura Material Munduruku.” His defence lasted for about three hours and led to many tears of joy being shed by the archaeology professors; other students, including Mundurukus, were present, as was Paca Munduruku, the coordinator of the middle Tapajós Pariri Association, who came to Santarém just to attend. Jair Boro was supervised by Bruna Rocha and Vinicius Honorato de Oliveira, and Camila Jácome and Raoni Valle were on his panel alongside Jairo Saw. He received 10/10 for his work.

Eliano Kirixi defended a dissertation called “As ações e as presenças indígenas Munduruku em suas muitas histórias;” a vídeo co-produced with Raoni Valle and Lucivaldo Karo named Daje-Kapap was also part of his final work. Eliano was supervised by Lucybeth Arruda and Raoni Valle, and was assessed by Jairo Saw and Eduardo Nunes. Several students were present. His work was strongly praised and he received 8.5/10.

Munduruku anthropologist Munduruku anthropologist Munduruku anthropologist

Information and photographs by Bruna Rocha <>