Indigenous Knowledge Systems and Anticipation

Living reference work entry


Indigenous people across the globe face a difficult paradox in their relationship with modernity. On the one hand, there is the necessity of surviving in an unsustainable system premised on colonial and imperialist violences carried out in the name of global capital, nation-states, and Enlightenment humanism. On the other hand, and at the same time, there is the necessity to keep alive possibilities of existence based on different metaphysics that can generate other ways of knowing/being. Indigenous knowledges have their own conceptualizations of temporality and futurity that are irreducible to those that orient modern Western knowledge. Yet, because of ongoing processes of colonization, Indigenous peoples have been compelled to negotiate Western ideas of time. We have also often been designated as anachronistic within the particular anticipatory contours of Western thought, in which we are deemed “out of time” and consigned to disappear in order to make way for more “advanced” civilizations.


Indigenous metaphysics Counter-colonialism Futurity Anticipation Knowledge Being 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.University of WaikatoHamiltonNew Zealand
  3. 3.Te Whare Wananga O AwanuiarangiWhakataneNew Zealand

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