Mnislav Zelený Atapana

(*1943), Czech Republic

Contribution to the dialogue of national culture

Ethnologist, writer and publicist Mnislav Zelený Atapana is a cultural anthropologist with a focus on the history of the Indian tribes of Latin America, especially the Amazon, where he has made many research trips. During his stay among the Indians in 1989, he was adopted into the Jawalapiti tribe and given the Indian name Atapana, in Czech it means Leaf of the Green Palm. He graduated in economics from the University of Agriculture and in 1974 completed his studies in ethnography at the Faculty of Philosophy of Charles University. During his studies he spent a long time in Latin American countries on expeditions and field research and studied ethnography at the University of Lima. His extensive publications include the Encyclopaedia of the Indians, the Small Encyclopaedia of Shamanism, the Small Encyclopaedia of the Gods and Myths of South America, and many other books. He is co-founder and first president of the Latin American Society. In 2003, he founded the Great Amazon Foundation to protect local Indians and rainforests. From 1996 to 2001, he served as the Czech Republic’s ambassador to Colombia and Ecuador.

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