Critique of Wikipedia article regarding Indigenous Peoples in Brazil.

The article Indigenous Peoples in Brazil was given a C rating in terms of article quality and the article is supported by two task forces: The History of Brazil task force, and the Geography of Brazil task force. It is part of the wikiproject Brazil. The article goes into detail about what several hundred tribes were like prior to European contact as well as their treatment and history after European contact. This history of interaction goes from the first landing of the Portuguese in 1500 all the way to today. The article is relevant to the Indigenous peoples of Brazil and attempts to include as much information as it possibly can in a summary about these currently living indigenous groups, but as addressed in the article hundreds of distinct tribes have gone extinct in the last five hundred years and their history and legacy is difficult to decipher as these groups kept no written records and built structures and tools from highly biodegradable materials.

One of the main issues with this article that is bought up a lot in its talk page is the lack of citations for information. While the article does a good job like many wikipedia article of displaying lots of information in a clear, easy to understand manner, citations are important to show where the information is coming from and so future revisions can be made to keep the information concise and current. The section pertaining to Jesuits and the Military Government section had no citations at all. They did contain hyperlinks to other related articles, but no citations or directions to a source in the bibliography. As such it is difficult to know where this information came from and if it was put into the article in an ethical manner. No doubt this helped contribute to the low rating the article as a whole received. One such example is the section that discusses the legal issues SPI (the former agency that dealt with indigenous affairs) faced in the 1960s. There is a vague description of corruption, intentionally starting outbreaks, and mass murder, but there is a lack of citations to specific instances or the Ministry of the Interior’s notes regarding the investigation. Any legal documents pertaining to SPI’s dissolution would be most helpful in revising this article and explaining the full severity of these supposed atrocities inflicted by the federal government of Brazil. What is a distraction is that dates regarding certain events (like SPI investigation, Banderias, et al) lack specific dates. This makes creating a timeline difficult for the reader and any dates given by sources should be put into the article and cited. Many of the ethnic tribes listed in the article have little to no information regarding them. More research should be done on the listed tribes and put into the article.

The talk page of a wikipedia article often contains relevant critiques of issues with the article to help the authors make changes that keep the information up to date, to fix simple grammar mistakes, and to identify false information and address it. There were several valid critiques to the article. One such critique came from most likely a Canadian user as they tried to synthesize treatment of Native Americans in Brazil to Natives in Canada and they asked why there was such a vague description as to the legal status of Native Americans in Brazil (IE: Citizenship, legal protections, rights, entitlements etc). Another user critiqued saying the percentages of religious figures (percentages of Natives that worship specific faiths) was wrong. There was also debate as to the actual population of Native Americans in Brazil with one user stating that FUNAI (The agency that oversees native affairs for the federal government) had differing numbers compared to the article. There was also debate as to the current number of contacted and uncontacted tribes. If these issues can be resolved, and if future issues are noted in regard to factuality, it is best to hope these issues are resolved quickly.

The bias of the article remains neutral for most sections, but can be interpreted in the final sections (Environment and land rights) to be heavily leaning towards siding with Natives on the complex issue regarding land rights. Most sources are not from Native American primary sources but documents relating to encounters, research article, government articles and news articles, but the natives did not keep many detailed records so hearing their histories is difficult. Most of the citations that are present are up to date. To summarize the article, it has a lot of potential to give the reader a good summary of the Natives of Brazil, their culture, history and present issues, but it is held back by lack of citations and vague details in regards to key sections that are important in understanding native cultures of Brazil. It is not hard to understand why the article was given a C rating after looking over the details.