Regrounding in Place: Paths to Native American Truths at the MarginsReport as inadecuate

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Canadian Journal of Environmental Education, v18 p126-141 2013

Margin acts as ground to receive the figure of the text. Margin is initially unreadable, but as suggested by gestalt studies, may be reversed, or regrounded. A humanities course, "Native American Architecture and Place," was created for a polytechnic student population, looking to place as an inroad for access to the margins of a better understanding of Native American/First Nations peoples, and to challenge students to recognize the multiple realities of place through a study of Indigenous place from the People's conceptions and into contemporary society. Place is specific, and develops from competing recognitions of, and reciprocities with, a common givenness. This form of construction and recognition gathers locations, landscape, and architectural constructions, across a myriad of scales and is authenticated via collateral oral, ritual, and material culture as a rich, visceral lifeworld. The author's personal and philosophic paths that led to place are discussed as well as pedagogy used within the course, including sessions led by Northern Chumash and Playano Salinan Elders.

Descriptors: American Indian Culture, Indigenous Knowledge, Indigenous Populations, Social Influences, Social Attitudes, Environment, Personal Narratives, Interviews, Architecture, Geographic Location, Social Bias, Experience, Humanities, Phenomenology, Cultural Influences, United States History, American Indian History

Canadian Journal of Environmental Education. Faculty of Education, Lakehead University, 955 Oliver Road, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5E1, Canada. Fax: 807-346-7771; e-mail: cjee[at]; Web site:

Author: Lucas, Michael


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