Rethinking Intercultural Approaches to Indigenous Environmental Education and Research
Chapter 4: In Search of Common Ground: To Blend or Not to Blend?
. 4 . in search of common ground: to blend or not to blend? An increasing number of scholars, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous, are asking questions such as, “Is it possible to blend Western, Indigenous North American, and other ecological philosophies and knowledge? Or is it better to keep them separate, but search for commonalities?” Some, such as Cajete (2001) and Snow (1977/2005), suggest that the collective survival of our society will require the combined wisdom of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal cultures. Renowned Tewa scholar Cajete (2001) relates the story of a female rela- tive who has a “split head”; she is of mixed Euro-American and Tewa ancestry and often feels split between the two cultures. Cajete suggests that many con- temporary Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people also have a split head—torn between various cultural and sub-cultural influences and values. He proposes that the ultimate task at hand is to find ways to heal the split head of our collective society, blending the best of Western (and other cultures) and In- digenous cultures to create a unified whole. Turner (2005), a well-known Euro-Canadian ethnobotanist who has built strong relationships with Indigenous communities on the West Coast, also states: 56 rethinking intercultural approaches Despite the tremendous scientific and technological advances we have made since the Industrial Revolution, humans have not successfully protected our environments or cared for the Earth’s other species. Much of today’s environmental damage is a direct result of poorly considered use of technology and the impacts of this techno- logical mindset....
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.