The Anishinaabe people of Turtle Island [North America] have a teaching called the Seven Fire Prophecies, which clocks the history of our time on this land, from how we received our earliest teachings, through the arrival of the “light-skinned race,” through the loss of our ways. According to many of our teachers, we are now living in the time of the seventh fire, a time when there will be “a rebirth of the Anishinaabe nations and a re-kindling of the sacred fire.”
The eight fire is an extension of the prophecies, a suggestion and a wish that now is the time for the Indigenous people and the settler communities to work together to achieve justice, to live together in a good way.
—Yvette Nolan (Algonquin), Medicine Shows
In many disciplines where it has become apparent that scholarship has been one of the key technologies of colonization, complicit in the exploitation and decimation of the land and its human and nonhuman inhabitants, there has been a (re)turn to ways of knowing that are not about power/knowledge—naming, disciplining, categorizing, objectifying, and isolating elements—but about relationality, reciprocity, respect, and what Opaskwayak Cree scholar Shawn Wilson discusses under the principle, shared across many Indigenous cultures, of “relational accountability.”