What it might look like to incorporate Indigenous ways of knowing into the academy

February 6, 2019

“Indigenous knowledge systems have endured for millennia, but they’ve yet to be fully embraced by mainstream academia,” reports TVOas part of an interview with Melanie Goodchild, an Anishinaabe PhD candidate in the University of Waterloo’s social and ecological sustainability program. Goodchild speaks specifically about Anishinaabe Gikendaasowin, an Anishinaabe concept that means “our knowledge and way of knowing.” “So within Anishinaabemowin is encoded our teachings, the way we structure language,” explains Goodchild. “I’m not a fluent speaker. I, like others, have come to really mourn the loss of speaking fluently in my life, but I understand that that’s where knowledge resides. It resides in two really key places for Anishinaabe Gikendaasowin: on the land, revealed to us through experiences on the land, and in language, which also comes from the land.”  Goodchild offers examples of how knowledge encoded directly in Anishinaabemowin does not translate easily into knowledge systems expressed in English, but notes that she will continue to incorporate Indigenous ways of knowing into her academic discipline while encouraging others to do the same. TVO (ON)