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In 1884, the botanist and researcher João Barbosa Rodrigues (1842-1909) – who became director of the Botanical Garden of Rio de Janeiro – lived among the Crichaná indigenous people in the Amazon jungle, studying the indigenous botanical nomenclature: the Mbaé Kaá.

The result of this experience was the subject of Barbosa's presentation at the 3rd Latin American Scientific Congress in 1905. More than 100 years later, Dantes Editora has recovered and published this production, updating it in a new edition, Mbaé Kaá: o que tem na mata. A botânica nomenclatura indígena, one of the first books of the Selvagem collection.

In the dialogues of the Nhë'ery – Mbaé Kaá online cycle, we propose a convergence between this history of botanical thought and research in relation to the forests of Brazilian territory and the Guarani way of thinking, with its cosmology, language and knowledge. 

How can modern Western scientific thinking about plants communicate with the knowledge of originary peoples? What can language, words, nomenclature and classification systems tell us about ways of perceiving, understanding and being in the world?


The cycle includes 4 online meetings. We also recommend reading the book Mbaé Kaá: o que tem na mata, one of the books in the Selvagem collection and an important source for the creation of this cycle.

The meetings were mediated by Carlos Papá, a leader of the Guarani people and one of the thinkers of the Selvagem constellation.

Guests: Ailton Krenak, Fabio Scarano, Cristine Takuá, Saulo Kuaray, Antônio Wera Kwaray and Anderson Santos