Indigenous Web Round-up

Each week Sinchi shares indigenous news, stories and media from around the world in our weekly round-up. With a focus on arts & culture and promoting the strength of indigenous knowledge. We also introduce new members who have joined our global collaboration network.

This week, we’re happy to feature:

Sounds & Colours Magazine: South American music & culture magazine exploring the sheer wonderment of the Latin American world.

Partnering consultancy companies Converging Pathways & Beyond Connections, with a unique approach to engagement and development of individuals and teams.

Iron Yogis: A practice of breathing, living, exploring and sharing life experiences that offers a mentoring experience to many diverse communities.

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it, through forging it becomes steel’ –¬†Sensei Ueshiba

When a tongue dies

This beautifully animated video was inspired by a poem of Migueal Leon Portilla and shows us yet again the importance of the preservation of indigenous cultural expression. Because with the passing of a tongue, we also loose their stories, songs and the values involved.

Last week we introduced a documentary by Phil Borges. It so happens Borges also gave a Tedx lecture about the distinction of native cultures and languages, according to him we loose half of our languages with the passing of a generation. Out of all the 6000 languages spoken in the world today, only 3000 are spoken by the children (this talk is from 10 years ago). So Borges has made it his personal cause to document these cultures and their forms of expression:


Photo Journal – Katharina Louise (Peru)

This week, Sinchi featured the first part of three in a photo jounal by global nomad, photographer and storyteller Katharina Louise from Germany.


PHOTOGRAPHER – Katharina Louise.

The Indigenous people of the Peruvian Andes speak the Quechuan language, which dates back to before the Incas. The “Sacred Valley” is where many of the impressive ruins are and includes well known places like Cusco, Pisac, Ollantaytambo, Machu Picchu that show us how highly developed the Incan culture was. Most of the people I encountered in the mountains whilst hiking, lived very simply in stone houses, trading what they farm or with the wool of their Alpacas. I found the best way to connect and communicate with the people was to share the leaves of the sacred Coca Plant (that energizes, clears the mind and helps against altitude sickness), sit together and enjoy the view.

Interested to see more of Katharina’s work? Please check out her page.

Musical feature: the global instrument

Meet the waza. It’s a three to four meter long metal trumpet used in African Hausa traditional ceremonial music. The instrument is ancient and very important to the heritage of many African cultures, but strikingly bares a lot of similarities to instruments from many other parts of the world. Like the Didgeridoo from Australia or different types of long horns found all over the world (Alphorns, Romanian Horns, Fujara trombita in Slovakia, Midwinterhoorn in Holland…) these are conical open tubes that are played like a trumpet. This means the sound is created by the vibration of the lips. Kakaki is the name used in Chad, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Benin Niger, and Nigeria. Being an ancient instrument, the waza was predominant among Songhai cavalry. Its sound is associated with royalty and it is only played at events at the palace of the king or sultan in Hausa societies. Waza are exclusively played by men.