2016 Hutton Lectures co-sponsored by The South Asianist

Organised by The Kohima Institute in conjunction with the North East Forum (NEF) and Centre for Community Knowledge (CCK) of Ambedkar University Delhi (AUD), and The South Asianist Journal, published by the Centre for South Asian Studies, University of Edinburgh, this symposium will foster debate on discourses of indigeneity and indigenous (or indeed ‘local’ or ‘traditional’) knowledge and skills. Presentations will recognise both the fraught historical, ideological, and discursive genealogies of ‘indigenous’ and its epistemological status in relation to Western science, as well as important contemporary uses of the term (particularly by activists) in political debate, and in relation to developmental aid, and environmental conservation. The emphasis of the symposium will be on the cross-fertilisation of ideas about indigenous knowledge, encouraging different perspectives on ways of knowing and of disseminating knowledge, including experiential knowledge. Presentations will be encouraged to vary in form and style, but generally to critique the hegemonic nature of scientificity and universalism in Western academic discourse, striving to give equal voice and validity to local beliefs and practices, meaning structures, aesthetic values, and points of view. Presenters will thus present papers, video and photographic exhibitions, as well as narrate memories, observations and experience in the practice of locally embedded knowledge and beliefs. The cross-fertilisation of ideas and forms of presenting, will contribute to understanding transformations and contemporary challenges in creating a coeval, and grounded ‘way of knowing’. Presentations, papers, and exhibitions are expected to be edited and published in The South Asianist Journal, an open access peer-reviewed journal, and in book form in collaboration with The Kohima Institute in 2017.