Indilinga: African Journal of Indigenous Knowledge Systems

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Are there distinctive indigenous methods of inquiry?

L Le Grange


This article explores whether there are methods that might be referred to as being distinctly indigenous. In doing so the nature of method is examined and it is concluded that method is not universal and neutral, but rather situated and performative. The upshot of this is that research methods can be transformed and that processes of indigenisation are possible. However, methods cannot be distinctly indigenous in the sense that they can be (or have been) preserved and untainted by other cultural influences. Indigenisation could entail lines of flight produced by the rupturing of traditional Western research methods, forming a rhizome of heterogeneous elements derived from both Western and indigenous ways of knowing.

Keywords: Research methods, deterritorialisation, indigenous methods.

AJOL African Journals Online