Cultural Survival Quarterly Magazine


This special issue of Cultural Survival Quarterly features selections from our forthcoming book, State of the Peoples: A Global Human Rights Report on Societies in Danger, to be published by Beacon Press in September 1993. Cultural Survival has built up an international network of scholars and specialists who help us document what is happening to threatened societies.

Sub-Saharan Africa: Environment, Politics, and Development

The winds of changes are blowing across Sub-Saharan Africa, a diverse region of 47 countries stretching from the rolling savannas south of the Sahara desert to the coastal mountains and valleys of the Cape. In hundreds of cities and towns, prodemocracy demonstrators have taken to the streets.

Societies in Danger: Death of a People; Logging in the Penan Homeland

It is just after dawn and the sound of gibbons runs through the forest canopy. The smoke of cooking fires mingles with the mist. A hunting party returns, and the movement of the men reveals that they have killed a wild pig. One dart and the people eat for a week.

Societies in Danger

1. ANISHINABE The Anishinabe, who inhabit a region often called "the wild rice bowl," face two threats to their cultural and economical relationship with wild rice. The first is the degradation by industrial society of the balanced ecosystem of marshes, lakes, and streams that has supported their culture for centuries. Pollution is reducing yields and destroying natural rice beds.

Report from Vienna

Never before have the problems of the world's indigenous peoples occupied such an important place in the international human rights arena as in 1993, the UN International Year of the World's Indigenous People. Eleven years after the creation of the World's indigenous People. Eleven years after the creation of the UN Working Indigenous People.

Report from Geneva: the UN Working Group

In July, the United Nations Working Group on Indigenous Populations met successfully with several hundred indigenous leaders, activists, lawyers, and government representatives in Geneva to complete the Draft Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, under development for eight years.


As an environmental lawyer engaged in protecting threatened ecosystems throughout North and South America, I have witnessed the destruction of rivers, lakes, seas, and forests, along with the ancient societies that occupy these precious environements.

Oceania: Islands, Land, People

Due to colonial neglect and historical isolation, the Pacific Islands, home to the world's most diverse range of indigenous cultures, continue to sustain many ancestral life-ways. Fewer than 6.5 million in all, the peoples of Oceania possess a vast repository of cultural traditions and ecological adaptations.

Nuclear War: Uranium Mining and Nuclear Tests on Indigenous Lands

UNITED STATES Yakima, Colville, Nez Perce, Coeur d'Alene, Spokane, Kalispell, Umatilla, Klickitat

From This Day Forward

For a decade, Rigoberta Menchú Tum, a K'iche' Maya woman, has lived in Mexico, one of thousands of Guatemalan refugees from the counterinsurgency terror engulfing her homeland. In 1992, her efforts to advance human rights in Guatemala gained international recognition when she was awarded the Nobel Peace Price.

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New Alliance Fighting Development in the Choco

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Bolivian coca Growers Take On the United Nations