News Releases

Leader of Indigenous Ecuadorian People to Speak at Ithaca College

ITHACA, NY — A leader of the Sápara, a disappearing ethnic group indigenous to the Amazon rainforest in Ecuador, will speak at Ithaca College on Friday, Dec. 6. Manari Kaji Ushigua will present “As We Die: Facing Our Extinction, Recording Our Existence” at 4 p.m. in Park Hall Auditorium. His talk is free and open to the public.

The Sápara (previously known as Zápara) once numbered some 200,000 people, until the 20th-century demand for rubber led to their enslavement and the destruction of much of their jungle. Their population today is estimated at no more than 300.

The autonomous Sápara Nation was officially registered by the Council of Development of the Nationalities and Peoples of Ecuador in 2009, with Manari serving as its president until this past September. In his talk, Manari will share his peoples’ stories and struggles to collect and preserve a record of their culture.

For more information, contact Pablo Calvi, assistant professor of journalism, at