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Amazon Leader Discusses Land Preservation Fight

IndividualLifeSustainable CommunitiesWhen their land in the Ecuadorian Amazon was opened for oil drilling , the First People of Sarayaku fought back — and have won in the highest international courts to protect their land and the ecosystem’s resources.

Sarayaku Kichwa leader and advocate Patricia Gualinga will be on campus Thursday, March 9, and Friday, March 10, for a special film screening and class discussion, with a professor who has spent time in the Kichwa community for research.

Assistant Professor of Political Science Karleen West traveled to Sarayaku in 2014 as a co-principal investigator of a project funded by the National Science Foundation, and has published two related research papers.

She will join Gualinga as guests on the WXXI talk show “Connections with Evan Dawson” and members of the Rochester Committee on Latin America at 1 p.m. Thursday.

Thursday evening at 5:30 p.m. in Newton 202, there will be a screening of the award-winning documentary “Children of the Jaguar,” about the Sarayaku’s efforts. Gualinga will lead discussion with the screening.

It is free and open to the public.

On Friday, Gualinga will speak with students in an Indigenous Politics in Latin America class, who have been learning about indigenous experiences in Ecuador and Guatemala.

Gualinga’s visit is supported by the Geneseo Consortium of Latin Americanists, Office of the Provost, Department of Political Science and International Relations, and the Edgar Fellows Honors Program, in conjunction with the Rochester Committee on Latin America.