Brazil’s indigenous people are under attack, especially in hard-to-reach areas. Rural land conflicts reached record-high 656 attacks on indigenous lands in 2020 (CPT 2021). Although Brazilian public opinion favorably views indigenous people, land grabbers disproportionately target indigenous lands in frontier regions. While attacks have increased, there are wide regional differences. Of 827 municipalities with indigenous lands, about one quarter have seen some indigenous land invasion. Little is known about the social conditions that produce attacks on indigenous lands; especially because they occur by sub-populations in remote areas. What causes people to attack indigenous lands? This project combines existing municipal-level data and online surveys to explain attacks on indigenous lands. With official data on Brazil’s municipalities, we will construct a dataframe to analyze which municipal level variables (territorial, demographic, economic, social, and political) are associated with land conflicts targeting indigenous people (CPT data). Second, a novel online survey (with Facebook Ads and Qualtrix) in select municipalities will provide individual level data to leverage explanations of anti-indigenous attacks. Multiple and multivariate regressions will provide us ecological, relational, and cognitive mechanisms of attacks on indigenous lands—and point to elements that could prevent them.
PhD Candidate, Sociology, University of California Los Angeles
Data Journalist, Greenpeace