When the Exxon Valdez ploughed into Bligh Reef twenty years ago, scientists descended on Prince William Sound in droves. Few, if any of them, took Alaska Native traditional knowledge into account in recording their findings, and no doubt valuable information about the animals and flora of the area was buried under an oil slick of disparagement thicker than the scrum of North Slope crude blanketing the Sound’s beaches. Some Native educators are working now to fight against Western research bias with an all-Native perspective on natural sciences.
Ellen Lockyer, APRN – Anchorage
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