The Brazilian Amazon in Times of COVID-19: from crisis to transformation?

A Amazônia Brasileira em Tempos de COVID-19: Da Crise à Transformação?

La Amazonía Brasileña en Tiempos de COVID-19: De la Crisis hacia la Transformación?

Fabio de Castro Gabriela Russo Lopes Eduardo Sonnewend Brondizio About the authors

Abstract

The COVID-19 crisis is not a new issue. Conditions leading to it have been taking shape for decades. This pandemic is rather a symptom of much deeper challenges resulting from contemporary production and consumption structures, social inequalities, nature deterioration, and global connectivity. To think about the post-pandemic world is to envision solutions that tackle the root causes of the problem. Local communities and indigenous groups in the Brazilian Amazon are a source of much-needed social innovations that rely on alternative views of Nature and social relations. This essay aims to turn the attention to these practices as starting point to rethink our present and reshape our future. New pathways are needed in order to overcome the region’s ‘old normal’ marked by destructive resource expropriation and social inequalities, and move to a ‘new normal’ that rely on transformations to a more sustainable and equity-based society.

Keywords:
COVID-19; Amazon; Rural populations; Indigenous groups; Sustainable transformation

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