The Mururu collective was born out of a concern about the impacts of the new coronavirus on the lives of indigenous peoples in Maranhão and its possible degree of lethality. We are a collective formed by anthropologists, historians and indigenous people who work directly with indigenous peoples, both in research activities and in indigenous actions.


Our objective is to systematize the epidemiological data that are released about Covid-19 in the State of Maranhão and reflect on the reality of health care, among other public policies, aimed at the indigenous peoples who live here. In order to qualify the presentation of the data, respecting the indigenous diversity existing in Maranhão, we seek to expand the help and participation of the indigenous people, their representative entities and other allies so that together we can join efforts in facing this health and political crisis.

The data presented here are based on information published by the health departments of the State of Maranhão and municipalities of interest. These data are added and compared with others made available by SESAI, by Organs indigenous bodies of civil society and indigenous organizations. We try to group data from different sources to make the information more qualified and easy to view. An essential point is the direct communication with members of the diverse peoples that make up the indigenous collectives in the State of Maranhão


The month of April 2020, in the State of Maranhão, inaugurates the epidemiological bulletins of cases of the new coronavirus, giving rise to the notifications that started on February 28th. These bulletins are released by the State Department of Health and by the municipal health departments that make available to the public the number of cases by municipalities, their evolution and other statistical data. In the first bulletin presented by the State, 71 confirmed cases and one death were notified in the municipalities of São Luís, Imperatriz and Açailândia. At the end of the month, positive cases jumped to 3,506 with 204 deaths in 85 municipalities. But what about data on indigenous peoples? That was the question that haunted us. Concerned about how this epidemic would impact indigenous peoples in Maranhão, we decided to create the Mururu collective to monitor the expansion of Covid-19 cases in the country's historically most vulnerable population. When we started analyzing the data, on May 23, there were roughly four sources of statistical information about the new coronavirus that directly or indirectly affected the indigenous lands and territories in Maranhão. The bulletins: federal, state, municipal, and that of indigenous and indigenous organizations.

The first observation we had was that, in fact, in none of the official government data was there specific information about indigenous peoples in Maranhão. That is why we decided to face this debate and, with that, seek to expand efforts to give visibility to the confrontation of the new coronavirus among indigenous peoples in Maranhão. We seek to add efforts to organizations that support the indigenous cause and to indigenous organizations that, despite the general data reported by SESAI, started the process of giving an identity to these reported numbers. To start putting together the puzzle, we initially collected the data from the Maranhão State Health Department and with the help of the cartographic bases of IBGE and Funai, we set up the first map (Cases of COVID-19 by Notification Municipality, 05/23/2020). It is possible to visualize the municipalities that affect indigenous lands and territories and to observe by color the proportion of notified cases of Coronavirus in each of these municipalities. From it we envision adding new data and analysis. For this, we count on the participation of everyone who wants and can help the indigenous peoples in Maranhão.

Components of the Mururu Collective

Ana Caroline Amorim Oliveira . PhD in Anthropology (USP). Professor of the Humanities / Sociology Course, Campus São Bernardo, at the Federal University of Maranhão-UFMA. Permanent Professor of the Graduate Program in Culture and Society-PGCULT / UFMA. Link lattes: http://lattes.cnpq.br/6279006668275644

Daisy Damasceno Araújo . PhD in Social Sciences (UFMA). Professor of History at the Federal Institute of Education, Science and Technology of Maranhão (IFMA). Campus Coelho Neto. She is a member of the Center for Afro-Brazilian and Indigenous Studies (NEABI) at IFMA / Campus Coelho Neto.Link lattes: http://lattes.cnpq.br/9925770961288238

Kátia Núbia Ferreira Corrêa. PhD in Social Sciences (UFMA). She is the author of the book: "Too much land for little Indians? The process of demarcation of the Krikati Indigenous Land". She is a researcher at the Multicultural State and Public Policy Research Group (CNPq / DESOC / UFMA) and the Epistemology Research Group of Anthropology, Ethnology and Politics (CNPq / UFMA). Link lattes: http://lattes.cnpq.br/9431672106741102

Rodrigo Theóphilo Folhes. PhD in Social Sciences (UFMA). He is a researcher at the Multicultural State and Public Policy Research Group (CNPq / DESOC / UFMA). Link lattes: http://lattes.cnpq.br/9262170582606653