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Voices from the Amazon (Kumarian Press Books for a World That Works) 1st Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1565490215
ISBN-10: 1565490215
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A concert pianist living in Brazil since 1989, Le Breton took a three-month trip through Brazil's Amazon region, interviewing a diverse group of inhabitants. Though this book lacks insight and power , it serves as a decent overview of the region and its conflicts. Traveling in the state of Rondonia, which had grown from 100,000 people in 1960 to one million in 1990, Le Breton first speaks to representatives of the decimated Indians, who are struggling to acquire autonomy, then to loggers, one of whom declares, "These forests were given to us by God to be used." The caboclos --forest people of mixed blood--are concerned with day-to-day survival, and independent miners, known as garimpeiros, scratch out a living. A state bureaucrat waxes optimistic about planned local development, rich ranchers protest potential land reform, and rubber tappers talk about setting up forest reserves to protect against ranchers clearing land. Le Breton concludes, somewhat wishfully, that the Brazilian government must reform to preserve the forests, improve infrastructure and invest in environmental education, and that creditor nations should consider debt relief for Brazil.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.


"Few books tell the plight of the Amazon rainforest from the perspective of the indigenous peoples themselves. Le Breton lets the people of the forest tell us their side of the story."

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Product Details

  • Series: Kumarian Press Books for a World That Works
  • Paperback: 166 pages
  • Publisher: Kumarian Press; 1 edition (June 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1565490215
  • ISBN-13: 978-1565490215
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,699,039 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book does a fine job of letting the ordinary men & women of Brazilian Amazonia speak for themselves. While it does not have the analytical or scholarly depth of some other books on the subject (e.g. Hecht & Cockburn's "Fate of the Forest"), its strength comes from the author's ability to listen to the people she meets. For both the general public & college undergraduates, it is a handy & accessible introduction to issues of environment & development in Latin America. It definitely stimulated discussions in my course on Global Environmental History, & it would work equally well in courses on Modern Latin America.
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Format: Paperback
This very readable and well researched book explains the daily struggles of the people who actually live in the rainforest: the Indians, the rubber tappers, the loggers, the ranchers, the miners, and the river people. The author traveled across the vast Amazon areas to talk with the forest people and hear their stories. This book is very moving because it offers a real insight into the lives of the people that are suffering them most from the destruction of the rainforest. That the forest peoples trusted Ms. Lebreton is wonderful, and the stories they share are truly fascinating. Kudos to LeBreton for making the somewhat dangerous trek across the country of Brazil so that readers could have an accurate and honest view of the problems that plague the area.
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