Author Archives: Ky Yoon

Cultural property rights of indigenous peoples in Asia

Bengwayan, M. A.(2003). Intellectual and Cultural Property Rights of Indigenous and Tribal Peoples in Asia, Minority Rights Group International. Download

This report offers a good analysis of the current state of cultural rights of indigenous people in Asia. I found the report worth reading especially in two aspects. First, it shows the power relations of stakeholders involved in the appropriation of indigenous cultural property (indigenous peoples, the governments, corporation, etc). Second, the report examines the current state of cultural rights of indigenous people in Asia. It would be interesting to know about the state of indigenous people in Asia, in comparison with North American cases discussed in ETEC 521.

Ky (#5: Module 2)

Nanook of the North (Full Version)

In preparing Week 5 reading (i.e. Nanook of the North), I found the full version of Nanook of the North on Youtube. The full length film provides a context for better understanding the excerpt of the film, posted on the Module.  In particular, the full version seems to show more clearly the gendered nature of Nonook and his family. That is, Nanook as a bread-winner leads hunting while other family members are depicted in the domain of more domestic labor.

– The director Robert J. Flaherty earned reputation by this film due to its commercial success and its contribution to the field of visual anthropology.

– There is a feature film about making Nanook of the North; the film is entitled Kabloonak.

Ky (#4: Module 2).

Representation & Media (Stuart Hall)

In his lecture, Representation & the Media, distinguished media theorist Stuart Hall introduces how to analyse the process of representation in media, with interesting examples. Originally released in 1997 by Media Education Foundation, a proactive organization for critical media pedagogy, Hall’s lecture explores how and why representation is more than the reflection of meanings and reality. In the lecture, our common sense of representation as reflection is challenged by a new view to understand representation as constitutive of reality, as Hall notes that representation is not simply distortion or accurate reflection of reality and meanings that exits out there.  

This talk offers a critical approach to representation of marginalized people and therefore can be effectively applied to the case of indigenous people in the media. The linked video clip is only the first bit of the lecture. Other parts of the lectures may be found here and there. The full script of the lecture is available, as well.

Ky (#3: Module 2)

The Reciprocal Research Network

The Reciprocal Research Network (RRN) is an online catalog which was developed by the Museum of Anthropology at UBC (MOA), in collaboration with Musqueam Indian Band, the Stó:lō Nation/Tribal Council, and the U’mista Cultural Society. It provides fascinating images of 245,255 objects (including MOA’s 38,000 items). 

This online museum catalog seems to embody indigenous ways of knowing and archiving to some extent, given the introductory demo video. According to the video statement, the catalog is reciprocal, creative, collaborative, respectful, and accessible. The users, once log in, can browse and archive the web-displayed items and make comments on them.

RRN is a good example of how indigenous communities and the mainstream research institution can collaboratively develop the technological design which can benefit both indigenous and non-indigenous communities.  

Ky (#2: Module 2).

Media Awareness Network

Media Awareness Network provides resources about media literarcy, for educators and parents. In particular, it offers well-organized examplary media education programs for teachers. As discused in Module 2, the stereotyping of indigenous people in media needs to be critically examined and, for that purpose, media literacy education is required. Since the Internet allows its users an extensive and almost unlimited access to a wide range of information, it is especially important for young people to be discreet and critical about a plethora of images, narratives, and commodities on indigenous people which they don’t know much. In this regard, the Media Awareness Netowork seems a very useful site for educators to guide young people. 
Ky (#1: Module 2).

Connecting Weblog to Research Interests

‘Internetizing’ the indigenous

My research project aims to explore how information communication technologies (ICTs) re-define and re-shape traditional ecological knowledge, or native ways of knowing. Drawing upon recent critical studies of ICTs, I will question the myth of ICTs’ cultural neutrality and suggest a critical approach to the increasing ‘internetization’ of indigenous knowledge. In particular, my project focuses on the way in which the Internet re-organizes indigenous knowledge systems, while ‘deceiving’ the users about its cultural bias.

Inspired by Howe (1998)’s and Bowers et al (2000)’s view on the Internet as a deceptive technology, the project would find that the Internet is increasingly shaping the way in which indigenous communities are represented, interpreted, and imagined by others and even by indigenous people themselves.

My research question is two-folds.  

1) How can the Internet-based ways of knowing be compared with indigenous ways of knowing?
The Internet tends to enhance dis-embodied experiences in virtual space, disconnecting the users from their physical places and sensory experiences. The Internet-based way of knowing can be compared with indigenous knowledge in many aspects.

2) How would the Internet challenge and re-shape indigenous knowledge systems? What would be power relations behind the increasing ‘internetization’ of indigenous knowledge?
Given the increasing and unavoidable introduction of the Internet into indigenous communities, it would be necessary to examine the cultural implication of internet-based ways of knowing in indigenous knowledge systems. Furthermore, I like to explore how the tension between the Internet-based and indigenous ways of knowing can be negotiated.

Bearing this research focus in mind, I will search online and offline sources throughout the course. My weblog will focus on the following three areas.

– The nature and characteristics of indigenous knowledge.
– Limitation and cultural bias of the Internet.
– The influence of the Internet on indigenous knowledge systems.

Indigenous Knowledge Management Project

Indigenous Knowledge Management Project

This project was conducted by The Australian Government’s Cooperative Research Centre for Enterprise Distributed Technology between 1999 and 2006. The project aimed to explore how information technology can be used for preservation of indigenous knowledge. The outcome of the project was not simply theoretical, but rather practical in that the project developed a few software tools to assist indigenous people’s access and use of their digital resources. Some examples of technology for indigenous knowledge management are presented on the web-site.

Journal of American Indian Education
 The main aim of this peer-reviewed journal is “to improve Native Education through knowledge generation and transmission to classrooms and other educational settings”. While the journal is hosted by Arizona State University, USA, and its editorial board largely consists of US-based scholars, it seems to cover a wide range of indigenous issues of all Americas. For instance, it published an interesting article entitled Aboriginal Education in Canada: A Retrospective and a Prospective by V.J. Kirkness (2000) which overviews the development of indigenous education in Canada.

Canadian Journal of Native Education

This journal (Website) that is published by UBC’s Faculty of Education and University of Alberta’s Department of Educational Policy Studies provides a wide range of interesting and timely topics on indigenous education, with particular reference to a Canadian context. The full-texts are available via UBC Library service. Avaiable via ProQuest

C.A. Bowers
This is the web-site of C.A. Bowers who is the author of one of the reading materials for Module 1. The site provides useful resources for critical pedagogy and ecological education. C.A. Bowers seems to be as a key figure in critical pedagogy. His ecological and critical thinking is suggestive of indigenous education. To my understanding of some of his articles available on this site, Bowers’ critical pedagogy is in a unique and alternative position, even within the field of (Marxism-influenced) critical pedagogy, in that his approach aims to challenge Western-orientedness existing in the tradition of critical pedagogy.