All communities are teeming with energy, spirit, and knowledge, and Spiral to the Stars taps into and activates this dynamism to discuss Indigenous community planning from a Mvskoke perspective. This book poses questions about what community is, how to reclaim community, and how to embark on the process of envisioning what and where the community can be.
Geographer Laura Harjo demonstrates that Mvskoke communities have what they need to dream, imagine, speculate, and activate the wishes of ancestors, contemporary kin, and future relatives—all in a present temporality—which is Indigenous futurity.
Organized around four methodologies—radical sovereignty, community knowledge, collective power, and emergence geographies—Spiral to the Stars provides a path that departs from traditional community-making strategies, which are often extensions of the settler state. Readers are provided a set of methodologies to build genuine community relationships, knowledge, power, and spaces for themselves. Communities don’t have to wait on experts because this book helps them activate their own possibilities and expertise. A detailed final chapter provides participatory tools that can be used in workshop settings or one on one.
This book offers a critical and concrete map for community making that leverages Indigenous way-finding tools. Mvskoke narratives thread throughout the text, vividly demonstrating that theories come from lived and felt experiences. This is a must-have book for community organizers, radical pedagogists, and anyone wishing to empower and advocate for their community.
About the Author
Laura Harjo is a Mvskoke scholar, geographer, planner, and Indigenous methodologist. She is an assistant professor of community and regional planning at the University of New Mexico.