Tag Archives: cultural traditions

invert media – it’s the angle

invert media is an Aboriginal internet and video production company that focuses on archiving and communicating traditional Aboriginal teachings in an Indigeneous framework.  The company attempts to collaborate in ways that respect cultural and community sources.  Like many other production companies, invert media tries to work closely with First Nations communities to respect the cultural protocols that exist in each community.

“We believe indigenous knowledge is essential in addressing urgent matters in the world today” – this is the mission statement posted as an introduction on the company website.  In their work, the company’s two principal directors, Jennifer Wemigwans and Doug Anderson, claim that they respectfully to translate and apply indigenous knowledge frameworks, without compromising them.

Of interest, is the company’s intent to research thoughtfully and remain authentic to traditional Indigenous teachings.

The company’s two major projects are:

The Full Circle Project: a cultural learning Framework for Toronto Aboriginal Youth

Intro: “Aboriginal languages and cultures are threatened everywhere, especially in the city. The rapid pace of cultural loss is not being addressed fast enough to ensure survival of indigenous knowledge among urban aboriginal youth.”

Four Directions Teachings

Four Directions.com is a narrated series of animations that passes on some of the teachings and philosophy of five First Nations groups in Canada: Blackfoot, Cree, Ojibwe, Mohawk, Mi ‘kqmak

Each series of teachings is delivered by an Elder and provides a fairly rich multi-media introduction to each culture.  I am not expert on any of the tribes that were researched as part of Four Directions Teachings.com, but I think that this project may be bogged down by its ambitious scope.  In reviewing the teachings, it’s evident that the lessons being discussed by the Elders are simply an introduction to each culture.  There is no significant depth to the discussions and some sensitive subjects are deliberately not addressed in the online teachings.  For Wemigwans and Anderson to have carefully researched each culture (as they claim to have) would have take extensive resources which appear not to have been available to this private production crew.  In this light, while the media productions on the five tribes are interesting and somewhat useful, they certainly have limitations.

Elders’ Voices

Elders’ Voices – The History, The People, The Voices

Throughout Module 1 we’ve discussed educational goals and how Indigenous communities are different in this regard for a number of reasons and how these differences complicate how Elders are connecting with younger generations.  Technology is very intimidating for Elders and this site acknowledges this fact.  It is a very descriptive site that addresses many of the challenges and barriers as well as benefits of technology use for Elders.  It is well designed, aesthetically pleasing, user-friendly, easy to navigate and organized into three topics:  The History, The Peoples and The Voices.  This site is a useful resource for local Indigenous Peoples or for any others who would like to learn about Alberta and Canadian Indigenous Peoples.  There are various links embedded in the many pages of the site that connect to other sites and examples of Indigenous people and technology use (including challenges and barriers along the way).  This site directly confirms my original thoughts about educating Indigenous Peoples and my reflection on the Lee Brown video.

A direct quote from the site:
“Every line on the face tells of a story experienced rather than heard; every gesture and expression carries the weight of a cultural memory that has been guarded and preserved against the ravages of time and circumstance. These are the stories of Aboriginal Elders, the ones who remember and who speak to the ancient ways of ancient peoples.”  It is for these reasons that this website has been created.  This site reveals how Elders communicate their knowledge and keep cultural traditions alive through their work and daily lives.