(And nothing more.)
Today I want to make a land acknowledgment, and nothing more.
A land acknowledgment is just a formal statement recognizing the Indigenous Peoples and cultures who are the stewards of the land on which we now reside. (I’ve done land acknowledgements during in-person gatherings as a way of showing respect and honoring the Indiginous Peoples whose land I’ve been on, but I don’t think I’ve ever done one in writing before.)
A land acknowledgment is most traditionally read or shared during gatherings, as a reminder of those who came before us, and of the settler-colonial history that has worked tirelessly to erase Indigenous Peoples from the history and consciousness of our land.
In you want more information on land acknowledgments, and how to identify the land you’re on, you can check out these resources:
So here we go – I live in Asheville, North Carolina.
I acknowledge, with respect, that the land I live on (and am on today) is ancestral land and traditional territory of Anikituwagi, which is more commonly known as the Cherokee. I recognize the Cherokee as the native people and original stewards of this land.
The Anikituwagi knew this land as Togiyasdi, or “Where They Race,” and it was part of the vast Cherokee Nation, Tsalagi Ayeli. Due to North Carolina’s aggressive and illegal encroachment on native land however – especially their habit of forcing duplicitous treaties under the guise of the American Revolution–the Cherokee Nation eventually lost their land to the United States.
I acknowledge the need to listen and learn from the people of this land, and I acknowledge that this statement cannot make up for the settler-colonial history of violence and erasure that they have faced.
That’s it today… but I do highly encourage you to look up, learn about, and acknowledge the land you’re on, should you find yourself gathering this week.
Yours in collective liberation,
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