Indigenous Masculinity and Warriorism

Indigenous Masculinity and Warriorism

Intercontinental Cry

By Jay Taber

Dec 29, 2012

The warrior spirit is a vastly misunderstood and misconstrued calling. As the voice of the protector, its authenticity is distorted by militarists and pacifists alike. Those who heed the call in today’s world of warped values and political illiteracy must be prepared to deal with both ignorance and ingratitude.

In the absence of functional protector societies, warriors — whether protecting cultures, environments or economies — must often find camaraderie, nurture and sustenance in virtual worlds of global communications networks. While it is less than ideal, the breakdown of modern states and the reemergence of Indigenous nations place demands on authentic warriors that is unique in the history of humankind: where tribal societies once supported and integrated warriors into the fabric of extended kinship communities, the dysfunction of modern capitalist civilizations has left humankind unprepared to deal with anything of substance in meeting our means of survival.

As authentic leadership reemerges among Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples, the role of the warrior in protecting them is perhaps the most essential calling of all time. Understanding that calling is the subject of a February 2011 interview with Taiaiake Alfred, professor of Indigenous Governance at the University of Victoria, British Columbia.


[Jay Taber is an associate scholar of the Center for World Indigenous Studies, an author, and a contributing editor of Fourth World Journal. Since 1994, he has served as the administrative director of Public Good Project.]

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