Understanding Indigenous Anti-Colonialism

Glen Coulthard’s paper examines the relationship that exists between indigenous resistance, the colonial robbery, and the questions revolving round the land as a natural resource, which he terms “space.” Coulthard defines “space” in different words land, as the way of understanding and concerning to the world. The land is defined not solely as the physical space we inhabit, however also the animals, plants, people, rivers, and all other matters that are within its jurisdiction upon which humans can remember on for survival. In the paper, it is argued that people and the land have interdependency relations where the land expects humans to improve it whereas humans also expect the land to offer them the means of survival such as foods, and shelter among others. The main idea that has been argued here is the stealing of the indigenous land by colonialists. According to the article, the indigenous land is recognized as the uniting factor of the local populations and the colonialists came to disintegrate people by robbing them their greatest treasure, the land. Land united the past generations to the present, and it is expected to merge the present also to the future. Therefore, this explains how indispensable land is to the indigenous people. The author has mentioned several narratives to explain further his argument about the importance of land, for example; the story of Edward who was hunting the moose and was helped by the Ravens (birds) to identify where the animals being hunted was. The narration was an apparent show of the interdependence between the environment and humans.

The article exhibits various strengths, for example, it has managed to explore deeply the association between humans and “space” and how a united people can come together to reject the advances of colonial-capitalists of ruining the land which is the identifying feature of these people (Coulthard 83). However, the article fails to recognize that as time elapses, interests of people also change which means that the land though is being considered an important factor for identification, will lose it intended meaning. Similarly, the ethico-political manner in which people are expected to behave may be a pipe dream which will not be realizable because of the fast changing society where each gets concerned with their interests.

Work Cited

Coulthard, Glen. “Place against empire: Understanding Indigenous anti-colonialism.” Affinities: A Journal of Radical Theory, Culture, and Action 4.2 (2010): pp. 80-83

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