a thought on something i see often
July 27, 2013
as a means of reclaiming history and actually noting the achievements of your ancestors, i have nothing to say re: the rest of this post
can we talk about the ‘iaopoc group/area/people’ contributed [laundry list of awesome contributions to humanity]
something about this framing always troubles me. like, ‘we contributed this stuff to ‘science”. ‘we made this contirbution to modern technology’
these lists of achievement are often reactions to some white person/group devaluing an iaopoc people for doing nothing or not being civilized enough. basically framing the worth of the innovations in relation to whiteness.
reclaiming your history is massively important. knowing what your people did is also massively important.
my old white supremacist roommate used to claim that the fact that the Indigenous peoples of canada/usa/north america and of australia never invented the wheel, so this is why their genocide is warranted and they should get over settlers on their land and just assimilate already, because WHEELS!1!!1
now, regardless of whether or not this ‘fact’ is actually true (i’m fairly certain it isn’t since he was full of shit), what matters is the notion that a culture/civilization is only worthwhile if they’ve reached some level of development considered ‘sufficient’ in relation to whiteness.
this, obivously is full of shit.
but. assuming that people x never invented the wheel. or had agriculture. basically a hunter/gathering society that was nomadic.
the fact that they existed for any length of time means that they were civilized and awesome. not a single person from this group need ever write a long post going ‘here is what we contributed to science!’.
i come from a people who, by and large, many white people insist we had no history before they came1. that the earliest documentation we have of our heritage comes from spanish colonizers or priests. that we have no value or worth as a people because we have no history outside of colonization. Few books document any contributions we may have made to the current technological stage the world is at (I certainly can’t name any off the top of my head).
we exist. we survive. our history lives on in our traditions. in our bodies. in our families.
i am here
i need no other testament to the awesome majesty of the people i come from