Indigenous food sovereignty
Rematriation and stewardship of ancestral seeds
July 28, 2021
Welcome to the inaugural issue of The Weekly Sift. Shift. Lift. Today, I am sharing five links carefully chosen to draw attention to Indigenous food sovereignty, particularly seed sovereignty, across Turtle Island.
Why is food sovereignty a critical issue for Indigenous communities? Why is it important to plant and save Indigenous seeds?
In “Seed Sovereignty and ‘Our Living Relatives’ in Native American Community Farming and Gardening”, Dr. Elizabeth Hoover answers these questions and more. She sifts through so-called damage-based research to explain how and why heirloom seeds were stolen or lost. She then shares desire-based research that highlights the work being done to rematriate native heirloom seed varieties; pass on traditional knowledge and practices related to seed stewardship; and, in the process, reclaim the health of communities and environments.
Hoover is Associate Professor of American Studies at Brown University where she also serves as the Faculty Chair of Brown’s Native American and Indigenous Studies Initiative steering committee.
In The Seed Keeper (Milkweed Editions, 2021), Dakota author Diane Wilson weaves together the voices of four women, creating a compelling “story of reawakening, of remembering our original relationship to the seeds and, through them, to our ancestors.”
Watch a conversation with Diane Wilson at The Great Northern Festival (Feb. 7, 2021).
In addition to being an accomplished writer, Diane Wilson is the executive director for the Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance, a national coalition of tribes and organizations working to create sovereign food systems for Native people through the Indigenous Seedkeepers Network and other advocacy programs.
A return to a spiritual way of life with respect for Mother Earth.
Thanks for reading The Weekly Sift. Shift. Lift.
Until next time,