Saturday, April 8, 2017

Joe Joaquin: Use of Technology and Farming

According to Joe Joaquin preserving O’odham traditions should be at the forefront of the tribal mindset: “We think O’odham first. Then, white man’s way. Many people don’t understand because they haven’t lived this way…” Joaquin emphasizes the applications of this stance in the context of preserving traditional O’odham farming practices: “Now I don’t see anybody farming. They use modern equipment. I remember helping my uncle plow the fields. That was something we did. But technology and the world is going a different way. We are losing our traditional ways. Then there will be no more O’odham.” Joaquin seems to worry that the use of western technology may undermine traditional O’odham methods of growing. He mentions that in the past, the value of hard work and familial relationships were maintained because people were working hard for the common purpose of growing food. Joaquin’s position on technology and farming is not merely an instrumental means of preserving O’odham values, however. He seems to believe that farming in the traditional way is itself necessary for preserving the O’odham as a people. He says, “You must work your land and take care of the land. That’s all you got.” This is consistent with his definition of what it means to be an O’odham: “This is my land, the land is where I’m from. It's who we are.” 

1 comment:

  1. Even something as simple as a steel plow is from outside western technology. But maybe he thinks of the plow as somehow more consistent with traditional practices and lifestyle?