Rewilding ‘knowledges’: blending science and indigenous knowledge systems

Fenton, Lisa ORCID logo ORCID: and Playdon, Zoë (2022) Rewilding ‘knowledges’: blending science and indigenous knowledge systems. In: Hawkins, Sally, Convery, Ian, Carver, Steve and Beyers, Rene, (eds.) Routledge handbook of rewilding. Taylor and Francis Group, London, UK, pp. 124-133. Full text not available from this repository.

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This chapter alerts rewilders to cultural and conceptual challenges attending attempts to amalgamate Western science with traditional Indigenous knowledge. Springing from the problematic identity of ‘rewilding’ for Europeanised culture, it reprises the violent colonial binary expressed by the two knowledges, while acknowledging the ecological precarity that urges their reconciliation. Exploring the cultural complexities of such reconciliation is crucial if ‘rewilding’ is to develop as a liminal, ‘blended’ practice. Four approaches to illuminating ‘rewilding’ are considered, beginning with the problematics of finding language to discuss ‘Indigenous knowledge’. Second, the lived experience of land-based practices, situated in a complex web of ecological activity, are considered, acknowledging that intergenerational transmission of knowledge is inseparable from the lived experience of active, functional, and local learning. Third, the chapter points to the importance of adequately engaging with Indigenous cosmologies as a fundamental part of culturally transmitted knowledge. Finally, it considers new cartographies to posit a posthuman intersectionality between Western ‘scientific’ and traditional ‘Indigenous’ knowledges as systemically interdependent. Only through exploring the philosophical and practical creation of such new socio-cultural landscapes can rewilders create successfully the innovative knowledge required for their work.

Item Type: Book Section
Publisher: Taylor and Francis Group
ISBN: 9781003097822
Departments: Centre for National Parks and Protected Areas (CNPPA)
Institute of Science and Environment > Forestry and Conservation
Additional Information: Lisa Fenton is an ethnobiologist and environmental anthropologist. An internationally respected Bushcraft practitioner, Lisa is a lecturer at the Institute of Science & Environment, University of Cumbria, where she is the pathway leader for MA Outdoor and Experiential Learning (in Bushcraft).
Depositing User: Anna Lupton
Date Deposited: 09 Nov 2022 19:08
Last Modified: 24 Apr 2024 16:42
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