About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 10312-10315
Publication year: 2021
ISBN: 978-84-09-27666-0
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2021.2151

Conference name: 15th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 8-9 March, 2021
Location: Online Conference

A PERSPECTIVE OF THE MAYANGNA INDIGENOUS POPULATION OF NICARAGUA: SHINING LIGHT ON A MARGINALIZED INDIGENOUS COMMUNITY IN LATIN AMERICA

P. Lane1, E.A. Gómez Salazar2

1Grand Valley State University/UNAN Managua (UNITED STATES)
2UNAN Managua (NICARAGUA)
Latin America has over forty million people belonging to about 800 indigenous groups. Many of these struggle. The Mayangna are concentrated along Nicaragua’s central mountain range and the rivers that flow from the mountains to the Pacific and the Caribbean. The Mayangna people have their own form of government and territorial organization recognized in the Statute of Autonomy of the regions of the Caribbean Coast of Nicaragua. Their form of territorial organization is recognized through Law 445, Regime Law. This law allows for the lands to be communally owned by indigenous peoples and ethnic communities in the autonomous regions of the Atlantic coast of Nicaragua.

The authors are part of a multidisciplinary team that has projects focused on land use and trying to help strengthen leadership with a sense of direction. In numerous meetings with President Gustavo Lino and his team of leaders, the challenges and threats the Mayangna leaders and their people face in relation to the use, possession and collective ownership of land, have become clear.

Additionally, the Mayangna were given the right to hunt, fish, and preserve the great Bosawas reserve in north central Nicaragua. This little-known reserve is only surpassed by the size and scope of Amazona. Here was a place where they could preserve Mayangna's way of life.

Despite all the protection under the laws, the Mayangna do not feel safe. People from the Pacific coast called mestizos or colonists constantly try to invade indigenous lands to use them for agriculture and livestock. The mestizos use false purchase invoices, squat on the ground, cut the forest to make room for pasture. It is not uncommon to be dining during a meeting with President Lino of Mayangna Sauni AS territory and he receives a call and must hurry, to try to resolve a dispute between his people wielding arrows, and machetes and the land grabbing colonizers. Four members of the community recently lost their lives trying to protect their lands with their weapons.

The Mayangna have traditionally lived in isolated-cohesive communities. All of them had to leave for the safety of Honduras during the Nicaraguan civil wars in the second half of the 20th century. Today's leaders, Gustavo Lino and his colleagues remember this as part of their childhood and the return to Nicaragua to their promised lands.

In 2020, according to Gustavo, people are losing their land and their language. The language is being lost as the state requires students to attend schools where most teachers and the curriculum are in Spanish. This article analyzes the perspective of a little-known indigenous group in a Central American country.

This is important in many ways for the Mayangna and for other indigenous groups in Latin America. First it is important for the community of Mayangna themselves to see be known and hopefully understood. Second, it is a tool for education in Anthropology in and of the Americas. Third, it is important for others in Nicaragua to understand the challenges that groups like the Mayangna face and this information belongs in the schools. Fourth, many are focusing on empathy for marginalized communities bringing the history of the Mayangna to the present can help. It can lead to understanding of the hundreds of other indigenous groups, and over 40 million people (the size of Spain). It is a small start but important in the progress of education about the peoples of the Americas.
@InProceedings{LANE2021APE,
author = {Lane, P. and G{\'{o}}mez Salazar, E.A.},
title = {A PERSPECTIVE OF THE MAYANGNA INDIGENOUS POPULATION OF NICARAGUA: SHINING LIGHT ON A MARGINALIZED INDIGENOUS COMMUNITY IN LATIN AMERICA},
series = {15th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2021 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-09-27666-0},
issn = {2340-1079},
doi = {10.21125/inted.2021.2151},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/inted.2021.2151},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Online Conference},
month = {8-9 March, 2021},
year = {2021},
pages = {10312-10315}}
TY - CONF
AU - P. Lane AU - E.A. Gómez Salazar
TI - A PERSPECTIVE OF THE MAYANGNA INDIGENOUS POPULATION OF NICARAGUA: SHINING LIGHT ON A MARGINALIZED INDIGENOUS COMMUNITY IN LATIN AMERICA
SN - 978-84-09-27666-0/2340-1079
DO - 10.21125/inted.2021.2151
PY - 2021
Y1 - 8-9 March, 2021
CI - Online Conference
JO - 15th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2021 Proceedings
SP - 10312
EP - 10315
ER -
P. Lane, E.A. Gómez Salazar (2021) A PERSPECTIVE OF THE MAYANGNA INDIGENOUS POPULATION OF NICARAGUA: SHINING LIGHT ON A MARGINALIZED INDIGENOUS COMMUNITY IN LATIN AMERICA, INTED2021 Proceedings, pp. 10312-10315.
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