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About this book
Ideas to Postpone the End of the World
Ailton Krenak • Anthony Doyle
From renowned Brazilian Indigenous activist and leader Ailton Krenak comes an urgent and necessary appeal to save the planet.
Humanity is facing the greatest environmental disaster of our existence. Global pandemics, extreme weather events, and massive wildfires all define the era that many are now calling the Anthropocene.
In the three lectures that comprise Ideas to Postpone the End of the World, renowned Indigenous activist and leader Ailton Krenak argues that the current environmental crisis is rooted in modern society’s flawed concept of “humanity” — that human beings are superior to any other form of nature and therefore justified to exploit it as we please. As a result, our entire civilization is built upon structures, organizations, and institutions that alienate us from the land, rivers, and trees, and that have forced the marginalization (and sometimes outright elimination) of any community that refuses to abide by these rules. Indigenous peoples throughout the Americas have already faced the end of the world many times before. Now, to stop our collective march towards the abyss, we must reject the homogenizing effect of our human-first perspective and embrace a new idea of “dreaming,” one that allows us to regain our proper place within nature. Only then may we find new solutions to survive.
A work of rare passion and intelligence, Ideas to Postpone the End of the World is a parable for modern times written by one of the age’s great thinkers and a necessary appeal for the fate of a world in crisis.
About the Creators
AILTON KRENAK was born in Minas Gerais, Brazil, in the Krenak homelands along the Doce River Valley, a region where mining operations have severely affected the ecology. A socio-environmental activist and campaigner for Indigenous rights, he organized the Alliance of Forest Peoples, which unites riverine and Indigenous communities throughout the Amazon. He has consistently been one of the best-known campaigners in the movement set in motion by the Indigenous Awakening in the 1970s and was a key figure in the formation of the Union of Indigenous Nations (UIN), which brought together 180 different Indigenous groups across the country in a unified front to push for rights. In his capacity as a journalist, producing videos and making television appearances, he has pursued an educational and environmental agenda. His struggles in the 1970s and 1980s were instrumental in the inclusion of Chapter VIII of the Brazilian Constitution (1988), which guaranteed Indigenous rights to their ancestral homelands and traditional cultures — on paper at least. He was co-author of the UNESCO proposal that led to the creation of the Serra do Espinhaço Biosphere Reserve in 2005, and remains a member of its managing committee. He was awarded the Order of Cultural Merit by the President of the Republic in 2016, and holds an honorary doctorate from the Federal University of Juiz de Fora, Minas Gerais. He is the author of two previous books, and was recently featured in the Netflix documentary series Guerras do Brasil.doc (Wars of Brazil).
ANTHONY DOYLE was born in Dublin, Ireland. He holds a degree in English Literature and Philosophy and a master’s degree in Philosophy from University College Dublin. He has been living in Brazil since 2000, where he works as a freelance translator of fiction and non-fiction. He is the author of a children’s book in Portuguese entitled O Lago Secou, published by Companhia das Letras.