El buen vivir

Notions of wellbeing among Indigenous peoples of South America

Authored by: Ana Maria Peredo

Routledge Handbook of Indigenous Wellbeing

Print publication date:  May  2019
Online publication date:  April  2019

Print ISBN: 9781138909175
eBook ISBN: 9781351051262
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter considers Indigenous notions of wellbeing, particularly as represented in the practices of Andean Indigenous peoples. It outlines who the Indigenous people in South America are, the challenges they face, as well as their rich traditions of community and reciprocity. These are embedded in a worldview that encompasses relationships not only in community with each other but a spiritual connection with Mother Earth and the natural environment. These traditions underlie the evolution of ‘community-based enterprises,’ an endogenous form of development. Innovations like these resonate with the concept of buen vivir that has found its way into much thinking in South America on alternatives to conventional notions about ‘development.’

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