Meet The Southernmost People In The World
Start writing a post

Meet The Southernmost People In The World

Within Tierra del Fuego resides a nation that needs to be researched more.

38
https://pixabay.com/photos/lighthouse-ushuaia-beagle-channel-4073638/
Pixabay

The motto for the city of Ushuaia is "The end of the world; the beginning of everything." Considering how it situates in the southernmost part of Argentina and since it is a stopping point for tourists traveling to Antarctica, that statement is definitely relevant to discussing the people indigenous to that area. The name Ushuaia comes from their language meaning "deep bay," and its airport is the site of their etiological myth of two girls turning into what would become ducks.

The Yaghan people live in an area called Patagonia, which consists of the southern parts of Argentina and Chile, including Tierra del Fuego. They slept in huts made from sea lion skin, thrived from berries and shellfish, and hunted on canoe through canals. They were among the people that Charles Darwin came across during his expedition around the world to study natural selection within the biosphere, who considered them savages for most of his professional life and brought three of the Yaghans with him back to England. The Yaghans were decimated by European diseases brought by British missionaries.

As of 2002, there were approximately 1,000 Yaghans left.

Christina Calderon is the last full-blooded Yaghan and the last speaker of the Yaghan language, who is still alive at the age of 91. Because of her identity, she is the subject of fascination by the Chilean National Council of Culture and the Arts, who have awarded her the title of "living treasure." Her family is interested in reclaiming the Yaghan language in their own household, especially her daughter and her granddaughter Cristina Zarraga, or Ikamanakipa.

With Zarraga's help in writing, she narrated a collection of stories in the Yaghan language titled "Hai Kur Mamashu Chis" which is translated into English as "I Want To Tell You A Story" by Jacqueline Windh. Within these stories, there is a common theme that ties them all together, which is the relationship between the people and the landscape, specifically the animals. They are showcased as being unique to Patagonia, with creatures such as the cormorants, sea lions, seagulls, penguins, llamas, and siskins; as well as a deeper connection considering how they were either once humans or associated with humans.

What is most known about the Yaghan is their unique word which is difficult to translate which is: mamihlapinatapai. A rough translation means "a look shared between two people neither of whom are able to say what they feel." There is a lot that the modern world has to learn from indigenous peoples, whether it has to do with the landscape or unique concepts like the one previously mentioned.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Alexis Hoffman

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we all know that cutting out social interaction has taken its toll.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Asked Instagram How 2020 Was, And Maybe It Wasn't The Worst Year Ever

2020 is a year to remember but it's not as bad as we made it out to be.

1814

It's finally 2021 and we're honestly all just happy that 2020 is over. I decided to ask my Instagram followers how they felt about 2020 and the results were a little more mixed up than expected.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

My New Tattoo Reminds Me To Love Everyone With Intention—And Yes, That Includes Myself

I've realized that love has almost nothing to do with agreeing and almost everything to do with grace.

952
Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

I'm a big believer that everyone has a story.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lum3n

Women are known to lug around heavy purses with unnecessary items inside. How many of these useful items do you keep in your own bag? We need to be prepared with a list of things to have with us whenever we leave the house again.

Keep Reading... Show less
https://www.theguardian.com/music/2019/dec/13/harry-styles-fine-line-review-columbia

I personally love using song lyrics as my Instagram captions, especially from songs that I love or that mean a lot to me, and I happen to love Harry Styles and all of his songs! So I made a list of lyrics from each of his songs that you could use in your next Instagram caption.

Keep Reading... Show less

Everyone's been here. And, truthfully, it sucks. But in order to move on and get past something you need to allow yourself to feel it for what it is--all of the heartbreak and pain--and then you can start to take steps move on.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments