This research argues that formal craft education in India has the potential to provide a viable educational counter space to global mainstream educational approaches and agendas. Eschewed in the mainstream approach are long-standing indigenous epistemologies and pedagogies–forms of knowledge that take holistic and symbiotic approaches to human and material cultural as well as the earth as our collective habitat. There are calls for a return to knowledge systems and educational approaches that have been long relegated to the margins but that could and should be brought to the center as powerful counter spaces as we navigate education for a diverse human population in better balance with our cultural pluralism and our habitat. These counter education spaces to utilitarian “schooling” is what Ivan Illich called for in Deschooling Society, and it is in this context that this project takes shape.
Eddie Boucher is an Assistant Professor of Integrative Studies in Social Science at Michigan State University. His teaching and research explore coercive forms of globalization as they impact culture and education in India.