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Bora Indian Girl Topless

Bora Indians

Survival of a Native Culture - Page 1 of 5

One of the primary tourist attractions in Iquitos is the Bora Indians who live near San Andrés Village on the Nanay River. Many tourists visit them and see them dance in their traditional attire (topless), but few get to really know the Boras and their culture. Who are these indigenous people and how did they come to live near Iquitos?
The Bora native community consists of about 3,000 native-speakers almost all living in Peru (about 2000 individuals) and Colombia (about 1000 people), although several Bora villages exist in Brazil.  Unfortunately, the Brazilian Boras no longer speak their native language having been largely assimilated into the Brazilian culture. Some linguists believe that the Bora language is related to Huitoto (Witoto).
The Bora tribe is divided into different clans, typically represented by an animal. They paint their faces with different designs with "huito" (Genipa americana), depending upon their clan. Intermarriage with the same clan is prohibited, thus preventing interbreeding and genetic aberrations within small communities.
Traditionally, the Boras Indians do not dance nude (topless) as they do for tourists in Iquitos.  Instead they use large batons that they pound in unison on the ground.


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