The first tribe I visited was the farthest away from Altamira, the Kayapó. Being closer to the outskirts of the Indian Reserve meant that they have had more outside contact with loggers, miners, settlers, fishermen and squatters coming into the reserve and onto their lands. The Kayapó were also some of the first tribes that were contacted by outsiders beginning in the 1950's. This was evident from their lost of culture and traditions and more adaptation to Brazilian customs. Some of the elders however still dressed in more traditional Kayapó custom. And some of the tribe members still used their traditional body paint made from charcole and oil, painting their faces and bodies in elaborate designs. Despite their outside contact,there was still a large language barrier as most of the adults in the tribe only spoke Kayapó, resisting learning Portuguese.
It was obvious from some of the things that I saw in the village, like a satellite dish and television as well as new modern clothes, that they had been dealing with some of the area loggers and getting money or goods from them in trade for trees in their area. The tribal leaders were very interested in harvesting the plants that Raintree needed and there was much discussion about it. Afterwards, several members of the tribe took me out into the forest to show me the plants they used for medicines.
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