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Title: Re-establishing innate connection to nature: an application of Indigenous ancestral practice in a new land-based learning centre on the French River
Authors: Pilon, Derrick
Keywords: Indigeneity;ancestral knowledge;land-based learning;community;seasonality;spirituality
Issue Date: 13-Apr-2021
Abstract: The common society is coming to the realization that the earth can no longer sustain the human race if we continue to expropriate it in the manner and velocity that we currently are. Unethical mining, fracking, mono-forestry, and factory farming are all symptoms of a greater problem; the blatant disregard for the other living beings that accompany us on the planet. The question then becomes, how can we as human beings re-discover our innate connection to the natural world and therefore heal our relationship to the planet and ourselves? In response, we need to alter our relationship with ourselves and nature in order to prevent the continued exploitation of the world. We must go back to the ancestral knowledge carriers: the Indigenous peoples of the earth, in particular the Indigenous peoples of North America, since it is their land in which we now live. We all at one point in our history had a connection to The Land through intergenerational knowledge passed down in place through our ancestors. It is now our responsibility to re-establish that connection to the land if we are to have any hope in saving it. A return to the land is the answer to the fundamental change that we as human beings need to take in order to effectively take our place as the instruments of great good for the ecosystems around us. Educational environments that focus on living with the land need to be implemented at a greater rate and scale, and that is precisely what this thesis seeks to accomplish with the formation of a landbased learning centre. The centre will be placed along a remote corridor of the French River and serve as a junction between the old world and the new, accessible through modes of transportation such as canoe or car. It will sit on park land currently claimed by Parks Canada, juxtaposed with Dokis First Nation across the river, while also being on the boundary lines of three city districts. The programs will consist of the collaborative efforts of the local Indigenous peoples from Dokis First Nation, the Maamwazing Research Institute as the academic presence, and the Ministry of Natural Resources as the Provincial Governmental group. It will serve as a potential model for how local Indigenous groups, Academics, and Provincial Governments can co-operate and comanage together.
Appears in Collections:Architecture - Master's Theses
Master's Theses

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