In Peru, indigenous people usually have two names: the one they were given at birth and use at home, and an “official” one that goes to public records.
“Julio Cusurichi may have won the prestigious Goldman environmental prize for helping create huge reserves for Amazon tribes, but in his home village, he is still known by the Shipibo-Konibo name he was given as a child: ‘Pino’, or hummingbird”, The Guardian wrote.
Thanks to an initiative by Peru’s national register, Reniec, this practice to have two names will diminish since they are retraining registrars to accept names from the 48 different indigenous languages that are spoken in Peru.
“Many registrars tended not to register indigenous names, so parents felt the name they had chosen wasn’t valued,” said Danny Santa María, assistant manager of academic research at Reniec, according to The Guardian.
In addition, these efforts from Reniec are part of a global initiative, the United Nations International Year of Indigenous Languages, that seeks to revive 2,680 indigenous languages around the world that are at risk of being lost. 21 of them are native to Peru.
(Cover Photo Archive)
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