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Indigenous People
Old Colombian languages, customs get newfound respect
Old Colombian languages, customs get newfound respect

It was another day at the office for Elion Uriana, a palabrero, or tribal judge, in Colombia's Wayuu indigenous community. A leader of his goat-herding clan, he was considering the aftermath of an arranged marriage gone bad. "The parents of the groom had given 60 goats as dowry to the family of the bride. But the girl ran out on him a month after the ceremony and took up with another boy, a very bad deal," said Uriana, 42. "The bride's parents blamed the groom for mistreatment, but in the end there was no reconciliation and so they have to return those goats." Uriana had helped arrange the marriage, also part of his function as palabrero, which translates as...