Pedro Arara Karo, a First Nation leader from Rondônia, tells us in his autobiography how, in the early sixties, he was expelled with his mother and brothers from their land by rubber barons who threatened to kill them. The Indians were employed as slave laborers on their own land in the rubber plantations. Karo grew up working for non-Indians and had no knowledge of his own language or origins. Only as an adult did he return to his people, who then chose him as their chief. Shaman Manuel, his older brother, explains how he mingles with divine beings and how he was initiated by their dead father, who appeared to him as a jaguar. Karo's mother was a cook at the Roosevelt Indigenous Post, in the land of the Cinta Larga people, and disappeared for more than a month, when two young Funai employees were killed in 1971. It was later found that the Cinta Larga had protected her in their villages. Karo's statement may be taken as an example of how the Brazilian Nation was born.
Indigenous autobiography; Massacre; Rebirth; Peoples; Leader