Spring 2018 - 60714 - PA 388K - Advanced Topics in Public Policy
Inequalities and Struggles for Rights: Indigenous and Black people in the Amazon Forest
Latin America inequalities map along the intersectional faultlines of gender, race-ethnicity, class (capital, labor) and other geographic lines (rural v. urban). The human rights analysis framework is key to identifying these inequalities in Latin America, emphasizing the significance of local public policies and services as determinants that define teh vulnerability and inclusion/exclusion of vulnerable people. How do the politics of the administration of policies and services contribute to protecting and promoting the rights of indigenous and black populations, such as the right to territory, education, non-discrimination and living with an absence of violence? Employing a human rights perspective, this course will address the conflicts indigenous and black people living in the Amazon forest face in seeking access to public services and justice. We will specifically investigate the negligence and/or violation of their rights and their struggles to for recognition and rights. The category race-ethnicity has been an effective indicator in the human sciences to evaluate access to natural resources by populations, the direction of public policies and the allocation of waste. In the Amazon, natural resources and the negative externalities produced in the environment have been distributed over time according to the race-ethnicity of people living in the region, establishing an inexorable link between access to environmental heritage, ecological problems, and inequalities. The course will discuss the struggles for recognition of territorial rights, the management of commodities (water, natural gas, precious stones, among others), education, and the pursuit of non-discrimination and anti-violence by traditional Amazonian populations (indigenous, riverine, maroon, quilombolas). Students will learn how to conduct analysis on these topics using a human rights framework and the tools to understand intercultural, ethnic-racial, and socio-environmental conflicts underway in the region. In addition, students will also learn about advocacy as an instrument of black and indigenous social movements and the ways that they formulate public policies that enforce the rights of the people living in the forest.