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The World's Indigenous Peoples Essay

1547 words - 6 pages

Who are the world’s indigenous peoples? In your answer explore the reasons why some colonised peoples identify as indigenous whiles others, who also occupied their lands prior to European invasion do not? Use examples too explain your answer!
European governments around the world are currently working particularly hard to atone for their previous sins against the indigenos peoples of their countries. Inorder to effectively do this the eurpean based governments have worked to create working definitions allowing them to identify indigenous peoples according to a set criteria. Npt all indigenous peoples agree that their identity should be definable, as they believe their identity is made up of their cultural history, traditions, teachings and communities. While most indigenous peoples have worked hard to establish themselves as identities socially and politically there is some indigenious peoples who do not. This lack of identification may not entirely be there fault however it may depend entirlyupon there government of the time frame that they lived on their particular parts of the world.
creating a working definition and criteria to identify indigenous peoples, is seen as a necessity, by the European orientated governments as it helps them to scientifically establish who the indigenous peoples of the world are. All European governments are taking steps to atone for forefathers mis-treatment of indigenous peoples whom they sought to conquer during the colonisation periods. In order for the governments to atone fully and appropriately it seen that they need to have a working definition to decide who exactly counts as an indigenous person. Attempting to create this definition however has proven to be a challenge as the governments must be careful not to affend or discriminate against any person of indigenous decent. In understanding this, ‘a United Nations Reporter by the name Martinex Cobo released a definition in 1986’, stating
Indigenous communities, peoples and nations are those which, having a historical continuity with pre-invasion and pre-colonial societies that developed on their territories, consider themselves distinct from other sectors of society now prevailing in those territories, or part of them. They form the present non-dominant sectors of society and are determined to preserve, develop and transmit to future generation their ancestral territories, and their ethnic identity as a basis of their continued existence as peoples, in accordance with their own cultural patters , social institutions and legal systems. In short, indigenous peoples are the descendants of a territory overcome by conquests or settlement by aliens.
While this definition effectively describes who constitutes as an indigenous person, is very vague. In keeping it vague the government effectively evades aggravating the indigenous societies. This idea of a definition was important to the European decendants, it was never overly important to the...

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