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The Lure of a “Modern Lifestyle”: Bridging the Food Generation Gap in South Africa

by Felix Kwabena Donkor and Kevin Mearns . Good nutrition, health, and well-being are core narratives in the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Wholesome food is a common denominator in achieving these ideals. In many places around the world, however, food is more than what meets the eye or is served on the plate.

The Biocultural Fabric of Renosterveld: A Unique Ecosystem at the Heart of the Swartland, South Africa

wind-powered water pump

Text and photos by Emmeline Topp “You know how the Swartland got its name? It’s the Black Land,” the farmer tells me. His face is lined beyond his thirty-two years, decades of weather and work deepening its contours and tanning its skin. “When the Europeans first arrived two hundred years ago, all they saw was

Community and Biocultural Diversity Conservation in Ethiopia: Learning from Each Other

Text and photos by Fassil Gebeyehu Yelemtu I shall tell the story of my community in this article, but let me first say a few words about my interest in biocultural diversity conservation. Being exposed to the modern world and looking at unsuccessful stories of nature conservation, I always ask myself what the missing link

A Few Short Journeys along the Nature-Culture Continuum: Reflections on Community-Led Conservation

by Jessica Brown In late 2016, I made my first visit to the sacred forest that belongs to a village in the Togo mountain range of eastern Ghana, hiking up a small mountain to the forest accompanied by a dozen or so people from the community. The sun was beginning to set over the Volta

People and Plants: Sustaining Agrobiodiversity through Art and Science in Zimbabwe

Ms. Mai Biggie

Text, photos, and drawings by Saori Ogura . Dawn in the village. As the Milky Way—gwararakurumvi—recedes from a sky of deep navy blue, birds start to fly over the fields, espying millet and sorghum. The sun orb pierces the horizon and moves midheavenward. It’s March 2016, and I am a guest in the traditional chiefdom

Voices from the Field: African Rural Women, Custodians of Seed and Traditional Knowledge

Kagole Byarufu

by Kagole Margret Byarufu My name, Kagole, was given to me upon my birth. It initially belonged to my father’s aunt who had died a few months before I was born. She was herself a custodian of the sacred natural site cared for by my family, so the other members of my clan in the

Orpul as a Place of Mind: Integrating Local Ritual into School Curriculum to Sustain Biocultural Diversity in Tanzania

biocultural diversity

by Heidi Simper “A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin, and culture is like a tree without roots.” —Marcus Garvey During the rainy season in the bush of the Great African Rift Valley in Eastern Tanzania, amid Maasai culture, acacia trees, and cries of hyenas in the night, I was conducting my

Unity in Diversity: A Case Study of Intercultural Education in Tanzania

Maasai

by Jennie Harvey . Traditional knowledge (TK) is the knowledge accumulated by local and Indigenous Peoples over hundreds of years through the experience of living in a particular place. It includes knowledge about plants, animals, natural phenomena such as the weather, technologies for hunting, fishing, farming, forestry, and other activities, and constitutes a worldview comparable

Talking the Walk in Tanzania: Language as the Missing Ingredient of Biodiversity Conservation?

Project Contributor: Samantha Ross The Eastern Arc Mountain Chain in Tanzania is one of the thirty-three global biodiversity hotspots and provides an ideal opportunity to study biological and linguistic diversity. The range spreads from Southern Kenya to Southern Tanzania and was formed as the Rift Valley took shape creating isolated mountainous blocks replete with unique

Promoting Traditional Medicine, Indigenous Cultural Research, and African Spirituality in Uganda

Project Contributor: Sekagya Yahaya Hill The traditional African culture that acted as a social security system for the weaker sectors of society has greatly eroded. In Uganda, the use of herbal medicine was labelled as “backward, uncivilized and unholy” during the colonial era, and traditional healers suffered much humiliation. However, the knowledge of herbal medicine