“You’ve Heard It Now:” Traveling Through Stories While Teaching Indigenous Studies at a Polytechnic University in California’s Central Coast

Elvira Pulitano


This essay makes the argument for the use of stories in the classroom as a pedagogical tool to help students decolonize some of the Eurocentric tenets of Western education and open up to differing epistemological orientations. Using Thomas King’s The Truth About Stories (2003), I argue that King’s predicament about storytelling, including the social and moral responsibilities that come with it, intersects with Walter Mignolo’s notion of “border thinking” and his overall theorization on decolonialialism. Using my experience of teaching Native American Studies in a California “Polytechnic” State University, against a campus demographic that remains predominantly white, I offer, at the end of my discussion, an example of a successful program that holds great promises for a future characterized by a shift toward that polycentric education increasingly (re)claimed by scholars in the global south.  

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.13136/2281-4582/2017.i9.227


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