Our collaborative goal working Queen's University is to explore and document
1) Plant Medicine;
2) Traditional Farming Practices;
3) Shuar Ancestral Stories and Customs;
4) Human Stewardship for Amazonian Ecosystems
5) Singing “Anents” (Shuar Songs for Nature) to counter cultural genocide of their culture.
Our overall collaborative goal will be to directly support the Shuar communities’ vision for the future laid out in the Shuar 2021 United Nations Development Programme and PRO Amazonia funded “Life Plan” for sustainable economic development in the region created by the Shuar themselves. The focus of is for cultural knowledge and territory conservation in the region against state-backed neocolonial interests in the region (transnational Canadian mining companies). This research is working to support their vision for sustainable development by helping to create community-based tourism in the community of Buena Esperanza, conducting countermapping using their traditional knowledge and thus, being able to support further ancestral land claims over their traditional territory.
This work seeks to decolonize knowledge by decentring Eurocentric knowledge production between the Global South and North
You can read the Shuar 2021 United Nations Development Programme and PRO Amazonia funded “Life Plan” for sustainable economic development in the region here:
Conducting semi-structured interviews with men and women across the community of Buena Esperanza
We are using this tool to help map out traditional territory and use it for participatory mapping to gain legal entitlement of further Shuar lands.
Boaventura de Sousa Santos & Maria Paula Meneses, 2019