chapter  8
20 Pages

Untamed Education

The Philosophical Principles Behind the Kokama School
ByEdison Hüttner, Alexandre Guilherme

This chapter provides an overview of the past and current situation of indigenous education in Brazil, leading to the recently gained right to a differentiated educational system, if indigenous communities so choose. It discusses the Kokama case and their experiences with education, which have benefited greatly from this new right. Untamed education, based on this principle of imperfection, stands for the kind of education that is essentially indigenous and that does not try to 'normalise' indigenous peoples into the 'white man's society.' Early missionaries found it difficult to understand this multilingualism, preferring to force on indigenous communities a reductionist monolingual perspective causing great cultural and social damage to communities. The indigenous schools embrace this movement, the flow of their reality and worldview, so that imbalances and imperfections are respected and accepted rather than disregarded or overcome within the educational setting.