The Archipelago of Hope: Wisdom and Resilience from the Edge of Climate Change by Gleb Raygorodetsky

The Archipelago of Hope: Wisdom and Resilience from the Edge of Climate Change

byGleb Raygorodetsky

Kobo ebook | November 7, 2017

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An enlightening global journey reveals the inextricable links between Indigenous cultures and their lands—and how it can form the foundation for climate change resilience around the world.

One cannot turn on the news today without a report on an extreme weather event or the latest update on Antarctica. But while our politicians argue, the truth is that climate change is already here. Nobody knows this better than Indigenous peoples who, having developed an intimate relationship with ecosystems over generations, have observed these changes for decades. For them, climate change is not an abstract concept or policy issue, but the reality of daily life.

After two decades of working with indigenous communities, Gleb Raygorodetsky shows how these communities are actually islands of biological and cultural diversity in the ever-rising sea of development and urbanization.  They are an “archipelago of hope” as we enter the Anthropocene, for here lies humankind’s best chance to remember our roots and how to take care of the Earth. These communities are implementing creative solutions to meet these modern challenges. Solutions that are relevant to the rest of us.

We meet the Skolt Sami of Finland, the Nenets and Altai of Russia, the Sapara of Ecuador, the Karen of Myanmar, and the Tla-o-qui-aht of Canada. Intimate portraits of these men and women, youth and elders, emerge against the backdrop of their traditional practices on land and water. Though there are brutal realties?pollution, corruption, forced assimilation—Raygorodetsky's prose resonates with the positive, the adaptive, the spiritual—and hope.

Title:The Archipelago of Hope: Wisdom and Resilience from the Edge of Climate ChangeFormat:Kobo ebookPublished:November 7, 2017Publisher:Pegasus BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1681775964

ISBN - 13:9781681775968

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Rated 5 out of 5 by from “We are all Starstuff!” “We are all Starstuff!” Renowned astronomer Carl Sagan would often remind his audiences of this. Around the same time, Navajo cultural expert and teacher Nancy Maryboy was explaining to her students that the Dene name for “star” is “my Ancient Ancestor from Whom I come.” These words, from two widely divergent traditions – science and Indigenous Knowledge – essentially convey the same information: we humans are an inextricable part of something much larger, much more complex, than we can even comprehend. We are not separate from nature, but are simply one strand of it. And, whether we admit it or not, we are totally dependent on the integrity of our biological and physical environment for our survival. In The Archipelago of Hope, Dr. Gleb Raygorodetsky conveys this message so eloquently, from the teachings, observations and wisdom of Indigenous Peoples from around the globe. He writes from his own personal experiences as well – from the time when he was a young boy, growing up on the Kamschatka Peninsula, to the times spent living and working with Indigenous knowledge holders from many different places. The Archipelago of Hope recounts many compelling stories and experiences, from the Tla-o-qui-aht Nuu-chah-nulth of the west coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, to the Karen mountain peoples of Myanmar, to the Skolt Sami of Finland and the Sapara of Ecuador. Raygorodetsky has witnessed firsthand how Indigenous Peoples share common ways of interacting with their environments. All hold an intimate knowledge of their local lands and waters, on which they and their ancestors have depended for countless generations, and all have developed deep, spiritual connections to place and to other species, grounded in respect for the land and its history, and for the ancestors, and reflecting responsibility for the well-being of future generations. Most especially, all have shared similar experiences of ongoing environmental change. These peoples Raygorodetsky introduces us to – and other Indigenous and local peoples generally – have already been coping with and adapting to climate change for the past couple of decades. They are in the “front lines,” bearing the brunt of extreme weather events, droughts, rising temperatures, melting ice and permafrost, and deteriorating water quality, and all that these have entailed in terms of impacts on the plants and animals upon which they depend. In the face of all that they have endured, however, they have managed to survive and to maintain and even strengthen their cultures and caretaking roles, with wisdom and with vision. Their capacity for governance, planning, decision-making and resilience, even with the loss and uncertainty, is the inspiration for this book. Dr. Raygorodetsky, in sharing their stories and his own, leaves us with a feeling of hope, gratitude and determination to do what each of us can, as individuals and collectively, to reverse the damage we are doing to the earth and, working with the immense capacity of natural systems and processes, to restore what has been lost. We could not have better partners to face this task together with than the Indigenous Peoples of the world. Dr. Nancy J. Turner, OC, OBC, PhD, FRSC, FLS Professor Emeritus and 2015 Pierre Elliott Trudeau Fellow School of Environmental Studies University of Victoria, Victoria, BC CANADA
Date published: 2017-11-20