Epistemologies of Resistance: Knowledge in the Peruvian Amazon

Lorena Reinert

Abstract


Epistemologies of resistance are knowledge frameworks that challenge oppressive structures and the ideologies that sustain them. In this paper, I analyze three weeks of ethnographic eldwork among the Asháninka of the Peruvian Amazon to demonstrate the ways in which the epistemologies that I encountered challenge oppressive structures and their underlying ideologies. My ndings consider the use of social and environmental context as epistemic indicators. I contrast these context-dependent epistemologies with the context-independent epistemologies that dominate contemporary “Western” thought, where the goal is to separate knowledge from context. I then consider how, as hybrid epistemologies that have emerged out of interaction and exchange in a globalized world, indigenous knowledge frameworks resist the notion of a binary di erence between indigenous and “Western” itself. These epistemologies of resistance critique the double binds created and sustained through the colonial model.


Keywords


indigenous epistemology; decolonial theory; hybridity; cultural change; Amazonian ethnography

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.15273/jue.v10i2.10352

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The JUE is a peer-reviewed online journal that publishes original ethnographic research by undergraduates working in a variety of disciplines. Submissions are welcomed. Contact the Editor, Martha Radice.

ISSN 2369-8721