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The Kinship of Plants and People—Enrique Salmón on Iwígara

Join ethnobotanist Enrique Salmón as he discusses his new book, Iwígara: American Indian Ethnobotanical Traditions and Science.

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About the Event

Join ethnobotanist Enrique Salmón as he discusses his new book, Iwígara: American Indian Ethnobotanical Traditions and Science. The belief that all life-forms are interconnected and share the same breath—known in the Rarámuri tribe as iwígara—has resulted in a treasury of knowledge about the natural world, passed down for millennia by native cultures. Enrique Salmón builds on this concept of connection and highlights 80 plants revered by North America’s indigenous peoples. Salmón teaches us the ways plants are used as food and medicine, the details of their identification and harvest, their important health benefits, plus their role in traditional stories and myths.

Dr. Enrique Salmón is head of the American Indian Studies Program at California State University–East Bay, in Hayward, California. His own Rarámuri family has always gathered, grown, and used plants for many medicinal and cultural purposes. He feels indigenous cultural concepts of the natural world are only part of a complex and sophisticated understanding of landscapes and biocultural diversity, and he has dedicated his studies to Ethnobiology, Agroecoclogy, and Ancestral Ecological Knowledge in order to better understand his own and other cultural perceptions of culture, landscapes, and place.

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