chapter  6
4 Pages

Lucy Mair ‘ETHNOCIDE’

What then does ‘ethnocide’ destroy? Those who use the word refer without discrimination to two quite different kinds of victim, people and cultures. The word became current along with the latest invasion by peoples of advanced technology of the habitat of populations whose techniques are still primitive, the forest-dwellers of the remoter parts of Latin America. Some of these peoples have been treated with appalling cruelty or equally appalling negligence. Settlers in their country, who have cleared for ranching the forests where they get their livelihood, have

■ ‘ETHNOCIDE’, RAINews, 7, March/April 1975, pp. 4-5

deliberately killed some. One tribe was exterminated by an epidemic of measles. As was described in Christopher Hampton’s play, Savages [a play first performed at the Royal Court Theatre, London, in 1973 – Ed.], the last survivors of another were brought to Brasilia in an un-pressurised cargo plane; they did not survive this final journey.