Tupinikim

Introduction

The Tupiniquim (Tupinikim) Peoples are located today on three reservations (reservas indígenas in Portuguese) in the municipality of Aracruz in northern Espírito Santo state, southeastern Brazil. As of 1997 their population was 1,386. They are speakers of Portuguese and no longer speak their traditional language which was a member of the Tupi–Guarani family.

Historically, the Tupiniquim inhabited a large tract of coast from about 200 km south of Salvador down to São Mateus river. This is north of the present day Aracruz reservations and extended for about 600 km. Present day Reservations have been inhabited by the Tupiniquim since the founding of Santa Cruz and Nova Almeida (then Reis Magos), both of which had a large Amerindian majority in their populations during their first 200 years or so. The name of the three reservations they now inhabit are Caieiras Velhas, Pau-Brasil, and Comboios. This community lives in an area covered with rainforests.

The Tupiniquim have an ongoing land dispute with Aracruz Cellulose. In the 1990s, due to the devastation caused by this corporation, few of their previous 40 or so villages remained.

Adapted from Wikipedia’s article on the Tupiniquim peoples

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