This presentation is a basic introduction to many of the topics and themes that are represented throughout the curriculum.

In it I lay out the basic premises and explore the way in which Indigenous studies of nature characterize the natural world and provide a way of understanding and knowing that is complimentary to, but different from, concepts emphasized by the Western Scientific tradition.

I want to emphasize here that I do not think it is necessary to have Indigenous knowledge and understanding of nature be validated by Western approaches. The important theme is that at times Western and Indigenous knowledge may come to similar conclusions, but these are reached through different philosophical traditions. Thus Indigenous science (knowledge) is equally sophisticated and can yield results that are more insightful.

Presentation prepared by: Dr. Raymond Pierotti

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Discussion points to keep in mind:

  • How does it change the way you see the world to think of nonhumans as relatives rather than as resources?

Helpful Links:

  • For a good discussion of the meaning of "Science" click here
    • This paper asks the question: If there are different ways of accounting for a phenomena of nature then it is possible that some people will reject some of these accounts – including the account offered by Western science – and accept others.
  • To read an interview with Wolpert click here
  • For a discussion of Descartes and his ideas click here
  • To read more about questions concerning the life of Jesus click here
  • To learn more about Lilian Alessa click here
  • To read more on Darwin and his ideas click here