Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples 



To the colonized, the term ‘research’ is conflated with European colonialism; the ways in which academic research has been implicated in the throes of imperialism remains a painful memory.

This essential volume explores intersections of imperialism and research – specifically, the ways in which imperialism is embedded in disciplines of knowledge and tradition as ‘regimes of truth.’ Concepts such as ‘discovery’ and ‘claiming’ are discussed and an argument presented that the decolonization of research methods will help to reclaim control over indigenous ways of knowing and being.

Now in its eagerly awaited third edition, this bestselling book includes a co-written introduction and features contributions from indigenous scholars on the book’s continued relevance to current research. It also features a chapter with twenty-five indigenous projects and a collection of poetry.

Personal Notes:

This book focuses on how “the decolonization of research methods will help to reclaim control over indigenous ways of knowing and being (Tuhiwai Smith, 2021)”. Understanding a decolonized lens to methodologies in research will allow me to create better awareness of methodologies and how to apply them in a way that honor indigenous perspectives when translating their teaching into earth-based way of designing. This book explains how imperialism has shaped research and what structures to be aware of in the dynamics of colonial power. It also bring forth ideas on indigenous and non indigenous scholars can better work with indigenous people when conducting research, which is relevant for the first part of my research project.

Although originally written in 1999, the newest edition (2021) includes a new co-written introduction and includes new contributions from indigenous scholars, highlighting the relevance of the book to current research. There is also a newly added chapter outlining twenty-five indigenous projects alongside poetry. Due to the recent updates of relevancy of the book, I believe the 3rd edition is relevant and recent to our current times.

Reference: Linda Tuhiwai Smith. Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples. Zed Books, 3rd edition, 2021.