Sunday, July 11, 2010

Simon J Ortiz on Indigenous Integrity

Simon J Ortiz writes that he has never liked the idea of "getting educated" when it means assimilation and acculturation to capitalist values (western values). He also doesn't use the word "renaissance" to talk about the flourishing of Native literature in these times since this word references an era that is outside of his Native framework. For him it is about Land, Culture, Community. It is about being place-based. It is about being rooted in the Land and in his identity as an Acomo person.

To be educated means to gain knowledge about the world - within and outside the Acomo Land. It means to understand that Capitalism as the never-ending exploitation of natural resources in order to produce profit and in order to keep people tethered to production jobs is a losing proposition.

When the US and World Social Forum claim that Another World Is Possible, they mostly mean that Capitalism (the gospel of neoliberalism) will have to go. It is not enough for capitalism to 'go green'; what is needed is a return to an ancient worldview -- the indigenous world view.

So here I am looking at the Bioneers conference schedule and trying to decide whether to attend the pre-conference intensive on Native TEK/Indigenous Science and the sessions on "Education with the Earth in Mind"...

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