Turn of the century Sapmi
|The indigenous way of life:
HARMONY WITH NATURE
DOMINATION OF NATURE
|Everything has spiritual value.
The spiritual and the physical are united.
|Everything has monetary value.
The spiritual and the physical are separated.
|The laws of Nature are emphasized.
Nature reflects the Creator.
|The laws of man are emphasized.
The Creator is in Man's image.
|Feelings are important.||Feelings are rationalized.|
|Society is based on cultural pluralism and the extended family.
Roots are remembered.
|Society is based on the melting pot and the nuclear family.
Roots are forgotten.
|Cosmology is spatial and timeless.||Cosmology is lineal and time-oriented.|
|Education is experiential. Teachings are from Nature and family elders.||Education is from the mass media and salaried professionals.|
|Epistemology is based on cultural renewal.||Epistemology is based on personal atonement.|
|Technology serves the people and Nature.||The people and Nature serve technology.|
|Material wealth is shared and given away.||Material wealth is hoarded and consumed.|
|Behavior is cooperative.||Behavior is competitive.|
|Justice and equality are achieved by cultural forms.||Justice and equality are achieved by legislation.|
|Society is egalitarian. Women and men have equal freedom and power.||Society is patriarchal. Women must emulate men.|
|Leaders put the People above themselves.||Leaders put themselves above the people.|
|The balance of Nature is maintained.||The balance of Nature is destroyed.|
The official definitions by the World Council of Indigenous Peoples is:
"1. the original inhabitants of an area;
2. the descendants of the original inhabitants of an area who are colonized, or
3. those who live in an Indigenous way."
The Sami Council adds: "those whose grandparents spoke the Sami language, or who live in a Sami way and are recognized as being Sami by the Sami society." Or, as some say, "It's a way of life we have!"
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