Friday, December 9, 2016

What do you know about the Yanomamo People?

UCF-Gender & Culture questionnaire:

Describe the Yanomamo, where they live, gender roles, how they react to Chagnon living with them. Do they accept him, etc?
The Yanomamo people also called the “Yanomami” are an indigenous tribe who live in the rainforest of the Amazon which is located between the borders of Brazil and Venezuela.  A semi nomadic indigenous people and a very isolated ethnic group consisting of approximately 35,000.00 members divided by 200 to 250 communal villages which are political and economically independent from each other.  Hunting, fishing, and horticultural gardening are among the practice used for survival.  The Yanomami are very superstitious and use strength and force to represent their manhood.  Furthermore, the Yanomami people blame all deaths to revenge and evil spirits. The supernatural is fought with ceremonies to send the spirits away and to clean the soul from evil ghosts.  

Children at a very early age strike and hit each other forcibly as a sign of been fearless and strong.  Violence is very prominent and celebrated among men.  The people in the tribe do not wear a lot of clothes.  Women wear accessories such as feather or flowers and the man wear loincloths.  They practice polygyny and can marry outside their villages.   Gender roles are very specific; at an early age the indigenous boys are taught to be ferocious and savage, they often receive accolades when acting aggressively towards their peers and the little girls have no voice.  Women are only important because they can help with chores and small children and also are an asset to their brothers, male relatives, or father when giving away in marriage.  Women often suffer violence and abuse and can only be rescue by a male relative if he considers her life to be in danger.  

The Yanomamis in the video look as if they accepted Professor Chagnon and it is clear that they developed a trusting relationship.  There is a lot of controversy among the anthropology community in regards to his methods and some scholar even accused him or altering the study by paying the men to fight and to perform acts of violence.  Regardless of all controversy one can see in the documentary that the Yanomami people accepted him and made him part of their lives.  He respectfully learned their language and customs and was able to create an environment of trust between the tribe and himself.

Tell me how you think you would react to living with such a remote group. Do you think it would be difficult, exciting, interesting?
     The documentary reinforced my goal and dream of one-day spending months and years, immerse in my studies, learning a culture or civilization, been part of the lives of the people I’ll be researching.  My reaction would have been full of excitement, anticipation, fear, and happiness.  Probably would have learned the language and custom also out of respect to their culture.  A research such as the one Professor Chagnon did is a combination of exhilaration, happiness, and trepidation.  Any anthropologists would have been honor to be part of such interacted and interesting study.

If you were an anthropologist, would you keep your distance or get involved with activities like Chagnon?
     My goal is to finish my bachelors in UCF and get my master in Anthropology abroad; doing a research in some remote area of the world, studying some undiscovered tribe or scrutinizing a well-known society.  As an anthropologist participant observation will be my must use technique as it will allow me to learn, understand, and respect my subjects.  I will only keep my distance just to safeguard the well-being of others or myself.  In 2010 I was lucky enough to study abroad in Seville, Spain and without my knowledge I became a participant observer of such beautiful culture.  

I recorded a mini documentary which it has never been published but it was an honest way of collecting data from the everyday real people of Seville.  The video has interviews with people from all walks of life from the 78-year-old lady who works in the “paleteria” candy stand, the University Professor who taught me (propaganda of the masses), to the singers, musicians, and dancers on the street.  My conclusion was that we may come from different cultures or regions but our similarities are uncanny and as human we all want the same thing, love, respect, and acceptance.

Reading about all the wrangles surrounding Professor Chagnon study, educated me about all the controversies that may raise from any study.  Anthropologists will always encompass controversies; however, we must continue to study the world to be able to understand one another and learn from each other’s culture to construct a better world. 
Brava <3 span="">

Chen, E. (2014, September 29). Case Study: Yanomami and the Evolution of a Culture.
Retrieved November 18, 2016, from

Chagnon, N. (2016, January). 'Yanomamo: The Fierce People' -Napoleon A. Chagnon.

Retrieved November 18, 2016, from     

"Life is the result of our choices" - Brava

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Humanity needs healing

"We have also arranged things so that almost no one understands science and technology. This is a prescription for disaster. We might get away with it for a while, but sooner or later this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces." -Carl Sagan
#mujerbrava   #carlsagan   #wakeupamerica   #corporationsarenotpeople   #somoshumanos  

"Life is the result of our choices" - Brava

Monday, December 5, 2016

America Enculturation

What do YOU think are the three most important characteristics that make an American an adult?
In order for a citizen to be considered an adult in the United States, many things need to occur.  From legal to social the changes are noticeable, both by the individual becoming an adult and the society which recognizes it.
·         First the person needs to reach the age of majority (18 years of age)
·         Second the individual needs to be independent from his or her parents and be mature.
·         Third when the citizen is financially autonomous.

At the age of 18, Americans are able to vote, travel by themselves, rent vehicles, buy cigarettes, rent houses or apartments, and legally work full time.  Having the ability to do so can help the individual to obtain financial freedom, the ability to be on his or her own, and be independent from their parents.  Americans associate adulthood with financial and personal independence.  As long as the person shows maturity after the legal age of adulthood, people will see them as an adult.  However, there are some restrictions until the person is 21, when they are legally allowed to purchase alcohol.  Being an adult in the United States takes more than just reaching the legal age.  It takes maturity, independence, and the ability to take care of oneself.
Pictures citations:

Kumar, S., TM. (2012, January 2). Enculturation-Slideshare. Retrieved September 29, 2016,

Wong, R. (2016, May 1). Learning Is a Process of Enculturation. Retrieved September 30,
       2016, from  

"Life is the result of our choices" - Brava

Cultural Religious Symbols of Quisqueya

Belie Belcan (Archangel Michael) San Miguel
     The picture above represents one of the most important aspects of my culture (religion and Santeria).  It’s supposed to be the representation of the Archangel Michael (God’s favorite) when he defeated “Lucio el Bello” (Luzbel) also known as Lucifer, the devil, Satan, etc.…  According to the legend San Miguel and Luzbel were best friend but when Lucifer blasphemed against God The archangel Michael dishonored and defeated him….
     I was born and raise in the island of Quisqueya commonly known as Dominican Republic.  My country which is an infusion of cultures from indigenous Tainos, Europeans settlers, African slaves, and many other diverse influences is well known for been a very religious and superstitious land.  The picture above was part of many household decorations, especially in houses were Santeria was part of the belief system.  
Below is a picture of a Dominican Santera and many of the religious symbols:

Paintings of saints, devils, angels, and many representations of the bible combine with the Santeria Symbols were part of the majority of the Dominicans households. 
Furthermore, my mother which is the “Santera” (person who practice Santeria) in our “barrio” {neighborhood}, had all those pictures in our house and every day before we went to bed and when we woke up that will be the first and last thing we saw.  Now as an atheist it fascinates me to learn and to understand our customs, religious practice, and traditions. 
Looking at those type of symbols everywhere created fear in our hearts and made us live horrify by the idea of a battle between good and evil. 

My mom still practice and strongly belief in God and Santeria and regardless of the fact that I am now an atheist every time I visit I feel compel to participate in our rituals and with respect embrace my family religion and beliefs.  
My understanding is that symbols are part of our lives and help us identify our culture and history.

Brava <3 o:p="">

"Life is the result of our choices"- Brava

El Gallo Quiquiriquí

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El Gallo Quiquiriquí
      The fairy tale of Quiquiriquí is a very popular tale from the Caribbean in which tell the story of a farm run by a kind farmer named Bonachon who treats his animals with kindness and respect and gives them the freedom to do whatever they please.  The animals are the center of the fairytale with speaking abilities, conflicts, and resolutions. Mr. Bonachon gathered his animals and told them he has to sell the farm to Don Cascarrabias, a mean spirited farmer who as soon as he arrived at the farm he treats the animals badly and hires a rooster named Quiquiriquí, who is the protagonist of the story and becomes a mean foreman.  The gender roles are very typical, all animal male characters are strong, mean, and in a predominant role and the female animal characters are weak, sexualized, and lazy.   There isn’t any information on the origin of the tale and the information found is only from early version of a tale that has been passed down from generations to generations.  All the written versions can be found in many scholastic books and collections of Spanish books of children fairy tales.  The version that I read for this assignment was released in 1986 by Cuentos infantiles publications; an online journal for books and children publications.
     There is only one version of the tale; however, the character of Quiquiriquí has been used for other tales where the rooster is similar to in character but taking different roles in a complete different story.  According to scholars of children fairytales most versions of the stories were written in Spanish.  Moreover, the first story was original from Spain and it was brought to the Americas by the Spanish settlers.  Since it is such short story it can only be found in book compilations and as part of other children tales.
Image result for el gallo quiquiriqui
      El Gallo Quiquiriquí is hired to be a foreman of a farm and as soon as he arrives he treats all the animals with anger, disrespect, and fear.  The main target of his abuse are the hens which are the female role in the stories.  The rooster abuses, humiliates, and belittles almost every hen except the beautiful Beatriz who he is enchanted by and doesn’t force her to do hard labor or face the same humiliation as her friends.  In the story Hen Isabel uses her beauty to deceive the rooster to get him out the farm.  Quiquiriquí is trying to force the hens to produce eggs or he would lose his job.  Since he is so horrible towards the hens they are afraid of producing eggs. 
    Furthermore, before the new owner arrived the hens used to produce eggs by listening to their friend Filomena or play the harmonica but since the new owner arrived he banned Filomena from the farm and no music or happiness was allowed.  At the end, the rooster stole eggs from the duck pond but Hen Isabel sees him and switched them to dove eggs.  When Don Cascarrabias see the small eggs he fires Quiquiriquí and allows Filomena to come back and play the harmonica again and the happy hens start making eggs again with the promise from their new owner that they will have similar freedoms as the one before Quiquiriquí was there. 
       The male Architype is the strong, angry, sexual, Don Juan, who is dominant and mistreats the women he doesn’t have any interest in, but will overlook mistakes and give preferences to the good looking and sexy one.  There are two type of female architypes, the four hens who became afraid and were abused followed the role of the weak female who is abused but is gentle, passive, and knows how to follow directions.  The beautiful hen Isabel plays the role of the sexualized female who just smiles, follows directions, and uses her beauty to deceive the male and to get what she wants. 
       The story is supposed to entertain children but it has help to shape the stereotype of abusive males who are always in charge and the role of females when in the presence of a male.  Regardless of how subliminal the message can be; it is clear that it has a patriarchal male chauvinist tone where females are subject to abuse just for not been pretty enough.  Fairy tales have the commonality of perpetrating all stereotypical gender roles and using male dominant perception to perpetrate all stories.  It is a fascinating concept that should be research and maybe further educate future generation to break free from the perception of expected roles of males and female’s characters in all future children fairy tales’ stories.       

Character list:
Bonachon,                                                                                          Original Farm Owner
Enriqueta,                                                                                            Hen/Chicken
Filomena,                                                                                            Hen/Chicken  
la vieja tía Copete,                                                                              Hen/Chicken
Beatriz,                                                                                                Hen/Chicken
Bonifacia,                                                                                            Hen/Chicken
El Buho Oliverio                                                                                Farm Adviser
El Viejo Gorrión                                                                                 The friendly Dove
Don Cascarrabias                                                                                New Farm Owner

Anónimos. (1986). El gallo Quiquiriquí. Retrieved October 12, 2016, from
C. (2009). Cuenta Cuentos: El Gallo Quiquiriquí. Retrieved October 9, 2016, from
B. (2013). Cuentos infantiles: El gallo Quiquiriquí. Retrieved October 11, 2016, from
El Gallo Quiquiriquí author. (n.d.). Retrieved October 13, 2016, from gallo quiquiriquí/image         
Neelen, I. (2003). El Gallo Quiquiriquí. Boadilla del monte: Ediciones SM.

"Life is the result of our choices" - Brava

The dumbing down of American

Image result for please accept trump sarcastic funny meme

"I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time -
when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries;

when awesome technological powers are in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority;

when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness...

The dumbing down of American is most evident in the slow decay of substantive content in the enormously influential media, the 30 second sound bites (now down to 10 seconds or less), lowest common denominator programming, credulous presentations on pseudoscience and superstition, but especially a kind of celebration of ignorance"

-Carl Sagan

The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

"Life is the result of our choices" -Brava