Decolonizing permaculture


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The dreamcatcher is one of the most widely appropriated symbols. Full disclosure: I did not buy this one, or a photograph thereof, from an indigenous person.

When I gave presentations on permaculture last year, I mentioned that Bill Mollison and David Holmgren, the Australians who first codified what became known as "permaculture," borrowed heavily from indigenous knowledge. "Borrowing" is the most charitable term I can use.

I also stated that decolonizing permaculture is ongoing today. I understand "decolonizing" to mean that the knowledge permaculture has appropriated is being recontextualized and properly attributed. If there are profits to be made from this, the peoples who compounded the traditional, generational wisdom have first crack at...

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