Mapuche is basically a group of residents living in southern central parts of Chile as well as some areas that belong to Patagonia. Mapuche’s literal meaning is people of earth. This group is composed of a numerous groups who have joined together to form a group because of commonness in their social, economic and religious structures. These people have lived through real difficult times in their past, but they have managed to remain free and independent.
Mapuche’s culture was rather more influenced by their past life. They built forts and defensive buildings in order to save them from attacks of different other tribes or communities. They learned horse riding in the same context. Apart from this, Mapuche group also enjoyed working on metals; they previously worked on copper, then iron and silver. This also helped them in trading account and in their wars as well because they were able to build weapons from metals.
Mapuche people have an ancient kind of religious beliefs. They have their unique legends and myths commonly accepted and believed to be true by almost all the group. Myths of Mapuche people include the inception of world and various other deities that reside in this world as well as what kind of spirits live in them. Some of their most important legends and creatures encompass the legend of TrentrenVilu and CaicaiVilu, Cherufe, Chonchon, ColoColo, Gualichu, kalku, Ngen spirits, Nguruvilu, Peuchen, Pillan spirits, and Wekufe spirits.
Music of Mapuche people includes numerous kinds of music. They enjoy folk music a lot but their popular choice involves rock and roll music, hip hop and rap music, electronic music, cumbia music at most. They have their own customized musical instrument; a kind of trumpet, flutes with 5 holes, vertical flutes with closed end and some string based instruments. They have named these instruments according to their own cultures and traditions.
They have long history that explain their past and present interest in textiles as part of their art. All their fabrics depict the knowledge and expertise they have gained from their ancestors. They have these special kind of woven fabrics that still are generally used for domestic purposes. Apart from this, their progress and developments in textile industry has also helped them to expand their trading opportunities.
Mapudungun is their most spoken language in the community. But still, this language has not gained acceptance by the government and is not even used for teaching in educational institutions. There have been debates on what alphabet to consider starting point of written script of Mapudungun. In other words, there is little consideration of this language for making it national language even 97% community is Mapudungun speaker.
History of Mapudungun has quiet old history from nearly 600-500 BC which makes it a real ancient society. Their long ago history starts from pre-Columbian period to the time when Spanish people started arriving here. Then came the early Hispanic period in which they had to fight a war against Spaniards which earned them rule of Spaniards but in following time they gained back their independence. Then came the age of parliaments followed by republican periods. Nevertheless, they always have fought bravely for their freedom.