Excavating Indigenous Knowledge Traditions

CEK  |   28 March, 2023

Excavating Indigenous Knowledge Traditions

Handloom Futures Trust (HFT) was supported with a grant by Centre for Embodied Knowledge (CEK) for their exploratory work in the years 2022-23.

The work of  HFT centers on the “Ownership of Knowledge” from the perspective of rooted artisan communities, the hope is to build a consensus on knowledge systems via the process of democratic pluralism of practitioners and scholars.

HFT is engaged with intellectuals and scholars from Europe and US, whose research is immersed in material craft and textile cultures of the past and their contexts.

HFT curates conversations between them and the living traditions across the Global South that cannot be just museumized as they have  practicing communities.

Other participants are from institutions on which the artisans and their knowledges sustain, like non-profits, trade unions, retailers, designers and consumers.

It is a three way strategy, but like all strategies, is evolving through the actions and interests of the participants.

This deep engagement of all the stakeholders helps create a “rasik” immersion of scholars and a “gyan” recovery of practitioners, that is the goal of HFT.

The outcome is that Indian artisans as well as those from other cultures, gain dignity for their knowledge systems, on par or even elevated from western scholars,  as expert embodied practitioners.

This is achieved through creating HFT fellows who value deeply artisans and can interpret them to western scholars , like hybrid “sutradhars” who are the next generation of practitioner-scholar path seekers.

CEK hopes HFT can follow up these interesting and enlightening explorations across continents and build a new collaboration of understanding craft as a science, technology and a knowledge system with the Western model of Academy.

CEK is proud to share the Presentation of CEK’s collaboration with HFT and their work at the intersection of scholars, practitioners and the sutradhar-seekers of HFT.


Written by: CEK