If you are gathering this week with loved ones to eat a harvest meal and share gratitude, we hope you’ll join us in also reflecting on the painful history of Thanksgiving as a U.S. holiday.
The forceful removal of Indigenous communities from bountiful landscapes full of pre-colonial food sources by the U.S. government created–and continues to create–a disconnect between people and place. These disparities can be seen through widespread trauma, the subjugation of Indigenous communities, and a relationship of extraction between people and their ecosystems.
Today, there are many organizations working to promote Indigenous food sovereignty, chefs preserving and amplifying Native American cuisine, and Indigenous activists fighting for food justice.
This Thanksgiving, we encourage you to join us in reflecting on what it looks like to support Indigenous food sovereignty efforts. We have a compilation of resources and information below.
In some ways, this holiday resembles a pre-colonial, cross-cultural tradition of expressing gratitude at the end of the autumn harvest season. In that spirit, our hearts are full of gratitude to share. We are thankful for everyone in our community who works in their own way to create an agricultural system that is economically viable, ecologically sound, and socially just. And, whether it’s a bountiful holiday plate or a quick snack, we’re grateful to the farmers and farmworkers who keep us all fed.
Information and Opportunities to Engage:
- Indigenous Food Systems Network
- North American Traditional Indigenous Food Systems
- Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance
- Abenaki Land Link Project
- Indigenous Owned and Operated Food Producers (Compiled by The Sioux Chef)
Resources for Kids:
- Children’s Books by Abenaki Authors
- Native American Books from Baby to High School
- Decolonizing Your Thanksgiving Curriculum (UVM Resource)
- Unsettling Thanksgiving in Your Curriculum (Shelburne Farms Resource)