Anambé - Sociopolitical Organization

Social Organization. Information about the Anambé in historic times is unreliable, and nothing is known about their social organization, social stratification, lineages, or name transmission. The Anambé have by now almost totally lost their traditional social organization.

Political Organization. The schema of traditional Anambé political organization is likewise unknowable. One man, Aypan, had functioned as the group's leader since the 1950s, but after a few years he ceased to have any real leadership role and held little more than a status position. Following Aypan's death in the 1980s, two other Indians were chosen to take the positions of chief and subchief. One was chosen because of his experience with the outside world. The other took on the role of chief in the absence of the former. The Anambé received no help from the SPI, which never played a guardianship role. In this it was quite different from FUNAI, which has begun to exercise such a role through an administrative unit installed in the village.

Social Control. Despite a long series of crises, the Anambé succeeded in maintaining a degree of internal cohesion that became more significant after the group's return from the Indian reserve on the Rio Guamá. According to information furnished by CIMI-Norte II, the more representative members of the group have been able to begin "indianizing" non-Indian elements in the community.

Conflict. Like other native societies, the Anambé historically had both inter- and extratribal conflicts. They also came into conflict with the Jesuits as these began submitting the Anambé to a process of disintegration—separating the men from the women and designating them to carry out work for third parties away from their homes. Little is known about the period after the Anambé had moved to the right bank of the Tocantins except that they fought with the western Gaviões, who forced them to move to another territory. Since 1950, there has been friction between the Anambé and settlers who have invaded their territory. This, however, has been counteracted by the establishment of the reserve that was assigned to them in 1982.

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