What is Around the World in 80 Tribes?

Around the World in 80 Tribes is my life project. It consists in a series of books about my experiences visiting and staying with different cultures around the world, living as they do and experiencing life in their shoes.

This is a project that appeals in the human essence in each of us with the goal of building bridges between different cultures.

It’s a project that seeks to stimulate within each reader a feeling of connectedness with the tribes through shared humanity. I want to create more consciousness and understanding between people.

I believe that there is much we can learn from native peoples. I want to share their beliefs and traditions, their goals and aspirations. I want to share their message with the world.

I want their voices to be heard, their story to be told.

What do we mean by “tribes”?

For the purpose of the project, a tribe is a group of people with their own independent cultural identity and which can be considered as a minority.

Examples of what we call tribes are native and indigenous peoples, nomads and other similar cultures. The Bedouin of North Africa and the middle east, the Mayans of Central America, the Inuit of the Arctic regions are all examples of cultural minorities.

What motivates me to write these books? What’s at stake?

The onset of globalization and the development of the internet, which presents people around the globe with revolutionary advantages and opportunities, also brings along hidden dangers and threats.

According to UNESCO, “the current era of globalization, with its unprecedented acceleration and intensification in the global flows of capital, labour, and information, is having a homogenizing influence on local culture. While this phenomenon promotes the integration of societies and has provided millions of people with new opportunities, it may also bring with it a loss of uniqueness of local culture, which in turn can lead to loss of identity, exclusion and even conflict. This is especially true for traditional societies and communities, which are exposed to rapid ‘modernisation’ based on models imported from outside and not adapted to their context.”

All over the world, the spreading of technology has eroded the traditional ways of life of many tribes as they are integrated into a global culture.

All this considering that many peoples still suffer from long periods of neglect or even persecution.

The stories and the cultures of many of these peoples are at stake, they are disappearing faster than we can recover it. The thought that much of the world’s cultural diversity will disappear during the next years shakes me to my very core.

I cannot stand idly by and let this happen.

What are the goals of “Around the World in 80 Tribes”?

The project is global, which means that there will be books on North American, South American, African, European, Asian, Australian and Pacific Island peoples.

In the end, my goal is to build bridges of understanding and respect between people and even different times. I want a New York banker to read about how a Maya tribesman roughhouses with his kids, just as he does with his own. I want a German mother from two hundred years in the future to feel a Seri grandmother’s consternation when she sees her granddaughter hide herself in an empty refrigerator.

I want to be their voice.

How will you write “Around the World in 80 Tribes”?

Around the World in 80 Tribes will materialize as a series of books (namely, immersion memoirs) which detail my experiences while staying with strangers from each tribe willing to host me.

I write about real people, with real thoughts and confessions (when I haven’t been asked to keep it to myself), and what I can directly observe and perceive while staying directly with these cultures.

While the books are being written and published, I will share my materials (such as interviews, anecdotes and experiences, pictures, video, etc.) with the world through Rambling & Roving, my Adventure Travel Blog. I want to use every tool I have to communicate the stories and messages of the people I visit.

The books and their content has many layers, and although my work might coincide with sociology or anthropology I chose to write from the perspective of an ordinary person: just a fellow human being.

The books are meant to be a reading that appeals directly to the essence of humanity that each of us carries within, not a scientific study. They are meant to be works of literature which celebrate the world’s cultural diversity.

Through my books, I will attempt to provide a comprehensive snapshot into how life is for different tribes. I will attempt to answer, among others, some of the following questions about them: Who are they? What is their essence? What environment or context do they live in? How has climate change affected them? What do they believe in? What is sacred or important to them? What message do they want to share with the world?

I do this because these people, and their stories, are worth remembering.